The Government has banned the drug Gatifloxacin due to its harmful side-effects, but its use has been allowed under certain brands which are used topically or on the skin.
In a notification issued last week, the government banned “Gatifloxacin formulation for systemic use in humans by any route oral and injectable” under the Drugs and Cosmetics Act.
Certain formulations of the drug, including that sold under the brand name of ‘Zymar’ are used topically as an ophthalmic anti-infective eye drop. It is used in the treatment of conjunctivitis.
Sources in the Drug Technical Advisory Board (DTAB) said that the ban would include only those formulations which are used through the oral and injectable route.
The move to ban the drug came after recommendations of the DTAB last month.
The Union Health Ministry had said that the Government is satisfied that “use of the following drugs is likely to involve certain risks to human beings and safer alternatives are available”.
It further said the Government was satisfied that it was necessary and expedient to prohibit the manufacture, sale and distribution of the said drugs in public interest.