Children run hair over their bodies after accidentally getting a hair restorer for an upset stomach


20 kids sprout hair all over their bodies after accidentally getting Minoxidil hair restorer for stomach upset in Spain

  • The children received minoxidil instead of omeprazole in mislabeled syrup
  • Minoxidil is used for hair growth, while omeprazole is used to treat gastric reflux
  • Photos of the children show that hair has grown all over their bodies
  • Their parents say it continues to grow hair two years after the mistake

About 20 Spanish children have sprouted hair all over their bodies after accidentally getting a hair restorer for an upset stomach.

Photos show the hair-covered skin of the young children living in the town of Torrelavega in the northern Spanish region of Cantabria.

Local officials admitted that a group of children had mistakenly been given minoxidil, a hair growth drug, in place of omeprazole, which is used to treat gastric reflux.

About 20 Hispanic children have been diagnosed with hypertrichosis - a condition where abnormally long hair grows all over a person's body - after mistakenly getting a hair restorer for an upset stomach

About 20 Hispanic children have been diagnosed with hypertrichosis – a condition where abnormally long hair grows all over a person’s body – after mistakenly getting a hair restorer for an upset stomach

Photos show hair growing all over the kids' bodies.  Their enraged parents went out and have now filed civil and criminal charges against the lab

Photos show hair growing all over the kids' bodies.  Their enraged parents went public and have now filed civil and criminal charges against the lab

Photos show hair growing all over the kids’ bodies. Their enraged parents went out and have now filed civil and criminal charges against the lab

The mislabeled syrup was delivered to pharmacies in Granada, Cantabria and Valencia, where chemists blended it into a formula to treat reflux.

The enraged parents of the children went out and it was later confirmed that 20 children had been affected in Andalusia and the Valencian Community, prompting a similar investigation into the suspicion that the same mistake had been made there.

Two years after the medical blunder, some children’s families have complained that despite treatment, hair continues to grow and that they are now demanding compensation.

According to data from the Ministry of Health, authorities discovered in late July last year that the mistake had been made when a group of families, represented by lawyer Javier Diaz Aparicio, filed a complaint with the authorities.

It took the authorities two months to realize the labeling error and close the lab where the error was made and recall the drug.

“Why does it take more than two months to test a drug?” Amaia, a mother whose baby was affected, asked Spanish television station Antena 3 last year.

The mislabeled syrup was delivered to pharmacies in Granada, Cantabria and Valencia, where chemists mixed it into a formula to treat reflux

The mislabeled syrup was delivered to pharmacies in Granada, Cantabria and Valencia, where chemists mixed it into a formula to treat reflux

The mislabeled syrup was delivered to pharmacies in Granada, Cantabria and Valencia, where chemists mixed it into a formula to treat reflux

It took the Spanish health authorities two months to realize the labeling error and close the lab where the mistake was made and recall the drug

It took the Spanish health authorities two months to realize the labeling error and close the lab where the mistake was made and recall the drug

It took the Spanish health authorities two months to realize the labeling error and close the lab where the mistake was made and recall the drug

‘We have not been told anything. I am furious, scared and feel misunderstood and a total lack of empathy. ‘

She added that her daughter had taken a high dose of the medication and that no one had called at the time to advise her on her next steps.

The families have now filed civil and criminal complaints against the laboratory and several companies for importing and distributing the drug for manufacture, distribution and sale, as well as two pharmacies in Cantabria, which were later acquitted by the judge.

Some children's families have complained that despite treatment, hair continues to grow and that they are demanding compensation

Some children's families have complained that despite treatment, hair continues to grow and that they are demanding compensation

Some children’s families have complained that despite treatment, hair continues to grow and that they are demanding compensation

The Spanish Agency for Medicines and Health Products has ordered that several batches of Farma-Química Sur SL, a pharmaceutical company in Malaga, be withdrawn from circulation on July 11, 2019.

The affected minors who had taken minoxidil developed hypertrichosis, the appearance of excess hair on the body – also known as ‘werewolf syndrome’.

In its naturally occurring form, hypertrichosis is an incurable disease, but it is unclear whether it will be possible to reverse the drug’s effects on Hispanic children.

What is Hypertrichosis?

Hypertrichosis is the term used for the growth of hair on any part of the body in excess of the amount usually present in individuals of the same age, race, and gender.

It is a very rare condition that patients are born with or develop later in life.

It rules out excessive hair caused by abnormally high levels of male hormones.

Throughout history, those affected have been a source of great interest, and they have performed in traveling circuses and freak shows.

A Nepalese mother and her children with hypertrichosis, also known as 'werewolf syndrome' (photo file)

A Nepalese mother and her children with hypertrichosis, also known as 'werewolf syndrome' (photo file)

A Nepalese mother and her children with hypertrichosis, also known as ‘werewolf syndrome’ (photo file)

Excessive hair can cause cosmetic embarrassment, resulting in significant emotional strain.

Treatment options are limited and the results of therapy are not always satisfactory.

No single hair removal method is suitable for all body locations or patients, and the method used will depend on the character, area and amount of hair growth, as well as the age of the patient and their personal preference.

Treatment methods include cosmetic procedures, bleaching, trimming, shaving, plucking, waxing, chemical depilatories, electrosurgical epilation, and hair removal using light sources and lasers.

Laser-assisted hair removal is the most efficient long-term hair removal method available today.

Source: American Journal of Clinical Dermatology

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