Counterfeit drug type #6: Painkillers and allergy drugs
Counterfeit Drugs: Page 6
Since they're relatively easy to obtain, you wouldn't think there'd be a big market in counterfeit versions of over-the-counter drugs. But the Partnership for Safe Medicines warns against fake generics and common OTC medications. One of the biggest fake drug busts of 2007, in fact, involved Claritin, a popular antihistamine. Another drug frequently counterfeited is the painkiller Celebrex (an NSAID). Less surprisingly, Vicodin, a prescription painkiller that's a combination of codeine and acetaminophen, is a popular online purchase and therefore subject to counterfeit.
Drugs to watch out for:
- Celebrex (celecoxib)
- Claritin (loratadine)
- Vicodin (hydrocodone and acetaminophen)
How to protect yourself:
In the case of over-the-counter medications, packaging is key. Become familiar with the typical labeling and packaging of any medication you regularly take and watch carefully for anything out of order. Vicodin is rightly a controlled substance, so obtain it only from your doctor and only in the dosage prescribed.