Pharmacists warn about the dangers of internet drug sites

It may be tempting for Nebraskans who live in rural areas and have to travel quite a distance to a pharmacy to make life easier and purchase medications on-line. Carmen Catizone is the executive director of the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy says they have researched many of these companies and discovered most they looked at are illegally selling medications with no prescription from a doctor needed.
He stated it is a $75-billion industry. Their study included 8,000 websites and 90-percent of them were either “fake, rogue or illegal” and were breaking federal and state law.
Catilzone says any type of drug, from diet pills to pain killers, can be purchased online without a prescription. He says the real problem is the chance of getting the real medication is very small as the counterfeiters do a great job in making the pills look like the real thing.
Dr. Jed Kaminetsky is a urologist and a medical professor says many of these medications are processed in unsanitary conditions and the manufacturers are using compounds like lead paint, rat poison and talc. He says erectile dysfunction drugs are the most counterfeited and adds the problem could be caused by diabetes or blood pressure and without a doctor’s diagnosis, these drugs could cause harm.
Studies show that last year alone, one in six Americans purchased medications on the internet. Both Catizone and Kaminetsky say that consumers that opt to shop online for medications can do so safely. The National Association of Boards of Pharmacy is co-sponsoring a new educational effort to draw attention to the risks of buying medications on-line. Go to “youtube.com/spotfakemeds” for details.