19 February 2007

Internet drug alert

The US FDA is reiterating warnings about buying drugs over the Internet after the agency learned that certain of these drugs contain a powerful antipsychotic.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is reiterating warnings about buying drugs over the Internet after the agency learned that a number of people who ordered certain drugs online (Ambien, Ativan, Lexapro and Xanax) instead received products that initial tests indicate contain a powerful antipsychotic drug called haloperidol.

Haloperidol can cause agitation, sedation, muscle spasms and stiffness. There have been several reports of people in the United States who've sought emergency medical treatment for symptoms such as breathing problems, muscle spasms and stiffness after using the suspect medications they bought over the Internet, the FDA said.

The origin of these potentially dangerous drugs is unknown, but the packages were postmarked in Greece. The consumers in these cases identified a number of web sites where the drugs were purchased and the FDA said it has launched an investigation.

However, due to the deceptive practices used by these outfits, it may be difficult to identify the vendors of the bogus drugs, the agency said.

Consumers should review information on the FDA web site before they buy any drugs over the Internet, the agency said. – (HealthDayNews)

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