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A Sacramento, California resident tragically succumbed to severe lead poisoning after using a hemorrhoid ointment sourced from Vietnam known as Cao Bôi Trĩ Cây Thầu Dầu. Analysis revealed that the ointment contained a dangerously high concentration of lead, at four percent (39,000 ppm). Lead, being highly toxic, poses significant health risks even at minimal exposure levels.

The woman acquired the ointment through a purchase on Facebook, with a relative in Vietnam shipping it to her in the United States. Whether this ointment is readily available for direct purchase in the U.S. remains unclear. There have been no reports of this product being used in Connecticut at this time.

Jar of Cao Bôi Trĩ Cây Thầu Dầu​​ hemorrhoid ointment

Consumers Are Advised To

  • Do not purchase or use this hemorrhoid ointment.
  • If you are using this ointment, stop using it immediately.
  • If you used this ointment, contact your healthcare provider and get a venous blood lead test. 
  • If you have this ointment, please contact the CT DPH Lead Program at (860) 509-7299.

Lead Poisoning

According to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), lead is a poisonous substance that can harm people of all ages and health conditions. 

While the signs and symptoms of lead poisoning vary, short-term exposure can lead to the following symptoms:

  • Headache
  • Abdominal pain/Colic
  • Vomiting
  • Anemia

Longer term exposure could result in additional symptoms:

  • Irritability
  • Lethargy
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle aches or muscle prickling/burning
  • Occasional abdominal discomfort
  • Constipation
  • Difficulty concentrating/Muscular exhaustibility
  • Headache
  • Tremor
  • Weight loss

More Information

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Health Alert: Cao Bôi Trĩ Cây Thầu Dầu​​ Hemorrhoid Ointment