(a) It has become a widespread practice for tannic acid to be added to barium enemas to improve X-ray pictures. Tannic acid is capable of causing diminished liver function and severe liver necrosis when absorbed in sufficient amounts. The medical literature reports a number of deaths associated with the addition of tannic acid to barium enemas. There is a lack of scientific evidence to establish the conditions, if any, under which tannic acid is safe and effective for use in enemas. Tannic acid for rectal use to enhance X-ray visualization is regarded as a new drug within the meaning of section 201(p) of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.
(b) In view of the hazards involved when tannic acid is used in barium enemas, any shipments of tannic acid labeled to come within the exemptions under 502(f) of the Act containing such phrases as: “Caution: For manufacturing, processing, or repackaging,” “For prescription compounding,” or “Diagnostic reagent—For professional use only” will be regarded by the Commissioner of Food and Drugs as misbranded within the meaning of section 502(f) of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act unless the label and the labeling bear conspicuously a warning to the effect: “Warning— Not for use in enemas.”
(c) Any tannic acid intended for use by man and found within the jurisdiction of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act labeled contrary to this section after 60 days from the date of its publication in the Federal Register may be made the subject of regulatory proceedings.
Title 21 published on 2012-04-01
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