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This application is a service of the Singapore Government.

Health Sciences Authority

Scope of Services


Complementary Health Products: Traditional Medicines & Health Supplements

Scope of Services includes:

  • Screening for Western Drug Adulterants

    Traditional medicines and health supplements may be adulterated with western drugs, which may be harmful if consumed. The Laboratory makes use of advanced instrumentation and techniques to screen for the presence of these substances. The western drug adulterants can be screened according to different product indications based on the associated pharmacological effect groupings as listed below
    • Analgesics
    • Androgenic Steroids
    • Anti-arrhythmics
    • Anti-asthmatics
    • Antibiotics
    • Anti-clotting Agents
    • Anti-comedone Agents
    • Anti-depressants
    • Anti-diabetics
    • Anti-diarrhoeals
    • Anti-emetics
    • Anti-epileptics
    • Anti-fungals
    • Anti-gout Agents
    • Anthelmintics
    • Anti-histamines
    • Anti-hypertensives
    • Anti-inflammatory Agents
    • Anti-muscarinics
    • Anti-protozoals/Anti-malarials
    • Anti-psychotics
    • Anti-pyretics
    • Anti-spasmodics
    • Anti-thyroid Agents
    • Anti-ulcer Agents
    • Anti-virals
    • Appetite Stimulants
    • Blood Flow Enhancers
    • Cardiac Inotropics
    • CNS Stimulants & Anorectics
    • Corticosteroids
    • Cough Suppressants
    • Diuretics
    • DMARDS
    • Erectogenic Agents
    • Estrogenic Steroids
    • Expectorants
    • Growth Hormones
    • Hair Growth Promoters
    • Hormonal Agents
    • Hypnotics/Sedatives/ Anxiolytics
    • Laxatives & Purgatives
    • Lipid Absorption Inhibitors
    • Lipid Regulating Agents
    • Metabolism Enhancers
    • Micturating Agents
    • Mucolytics
    • Myometrial Relaxants
    • Nasal Decongestants
    • Nootropics
    • PDE-5 Inhibitor Analogues
    • Progestogenic Steroids
    • Skeletal Muscle Relaxants
    • Thyroid Agents
    • Tricyclic Anti-depressants
    • Uterine Agents
  • Heavy Metals Analysis

    Toxic heavy metals may be present in traditional medicines and health supplements. It is important to ensure that they do not exceed the permissible limits. The Laboratory provides the analysis of Arsenic, Lead, Mercury, Cadmium and Copper.

Test Method for 4-in-1 Heavy Metals (Arsenic, Cadmium, Lead and Mercury) Analysis

  • Toxic Alkaloids Analysis

    The Laboratory provides the analysis of toxic alkaloids in traditional medicines, including Aconite Alkaloids, Amygdalin, Aristolochic Acids, Artemisnin, Berberine, Bufotenine, Colchicine Alkaloids, Ephedra Alkaloids, Lobelia Alkaloids, Lovastatin, Methoxsalen, Solanaceous Alkaloids and Tetrahydropalmatine.
  • Aflatoxins Analysis

    The Laboratory provides the analysis of Aflatoxins B1, B2, G1 and G2 in traditional medicines.

Western Medicines

Western medicines are tested for compliance with Pharmacopoeia (BP, USP, EP, IP) or manufacturers' specifications. The Laboratory performs tests on products in various dosage forms, including injections, infusions, tablets, capsules, creams, eye/ear drops, sprays, ointments, lotions, tinctures, mixtures, emulsions, extracts and solutions.

The Laboratory conducts a large variety of tests, including identification, assay, dissolution, disintegration, related substances/chromatographic purity, water content, melting point, tablet hardness, loss on drying, loss on ignition, optical rotation, pH, refractive index, uniformity of dosage units, uniformity of weight, gravimetry and extractable volume.

The Laboratory also provides investigation services on contaminated, substandard, spurious, falsely labelled, falsified and counterfeit medical products.

Test Method for Determination of N-Nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA) and N-Nitrosodiethylamine (NDEA) in Sartan Medicines

Test Method for Determination of N-Nitroso-N-methylamino butyric acid (NMBA) in Sartan Medicines

Test Method for Identification of N-Nitroso-N-methylamino butyric acid (NMBA) in Sartan Medicines