Warning over counterfeit diet pills sold online

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Warning over counterfeit diet pills sold online

8th July 2010

Online shoppers are being warned not to be tempted by offers of cheap diet pills, which can often range in quality from useless to extremely dangerous.

Sam Harmel, an expert in defective product cases with Fentons Solicitors LLP, said the latest breakthroughs in pharmaceutical aids to weight loss had led to a boom in counterfeiters peddling their wares on the internet.

"As with all medicines, those wishing to use the pills to lose weight should avoid the online vendors, and instead seek the advice of their GP," said Sam, a partner with the firm.

He issued the warning after a recent investigation by the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) uncovered thousands of counterfeit diet pills in the UK.

"The tablets were counterfeits of two well known but prescription-only anti-obesity treatments," said Sam. "One of them was actually withdrawn from sale in Europe several months ago, amid fears it could increase the risk of heart attacks in people with cardiovascular disease.

"But obviously the people selling the pills on the internet don't care about the health of people buying them - they are counterfeiters with an eye for profit."

Sam said there is no such thing as a good counterfeit medicine. "If you buy pills from a website, you will end up with pills which will be of little benefit, and the chances are they will end up doing substantially more harm than good.

"Fake pills are made in sub-standard conditions, they contain a number of impurities, and even if they do contain some active ingredient it really does not mean that they're going to do what they're supposed to.

Despite warnings from the MHRA, several people in the UK do still choose to purchase the pills from various dedicated websites or through online auction sites.

"The best advice to anyone considering using diet pills is to see a doctor," said Sam. "Whatever you may think you need to help you lose weight, if you want to obtain a prescription medicine then you should see your GP and be prescribed that medicine."

How can Fentons Solicitors help?
Fentons has a specialist department experienced in handling claims for victims of defective products. If you or a family member has suffered an injury that was not your fault, you could be entitled to make a claim for compensation.

If you think that you have a case or require further information, contact Fentons on 0800 019 1297 or fill in the online claims questionnaire.

Source - BBC News