The dangers of buying drugs online

LANSING, Mich. (WILX) — An estimated one in three Americans don’t take their medications as prescribed because they can’t afford them.

Rising costs, coupled with high health insurance deductibles, are pushing some Americans to turn to the internet, but shoppers should beware. Searching for life-saving drugs can have deadly consequences with online prescriptions.

For the 37 million Americans with diabetes, insulin is an essential part of managing high blood sugar. But the prices of some diabetes drugs are exorbitant. In fact, the list price of one has jumped 1,200% since its launch. Another is up 715%.

The cost of a popular rheumatoid arthritis drug has increased by 486% and that of a nerve pain reliever has increased by 420%.

“One of the things we have is a project where we order prescription drugs from online pharmacies, analyze them, and see what you actually get,” Dr. Elizabeth Gardner said.

Researchers have found some online pharmacies to be fake storefronts running scams with potentially dangerous expired or unidentified chemicals. Some of the drugs tested were inconsistent.

“It had the active ingredient, but when we quantified it, we were supposed to get pills that had 20 milligrams and they had between 18 and 41 milligrams,” Gardner said.

This means that consumers were either getting less than they needed or a higher dose than recommended.

The FDA recommends consumers buy from verified online sources linked to their individual health plans or “brick and mortar” pharmacy.

After: Health info

Subscribe to our News newsletter 10 and get the latest local news and weather straight to your email every morning.

Comments are closed.