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Beware of buying fake Viagra pills online! They could be toxic

Here’s a fun fact. Did you know Viagra (sildenafil citrate) was originally developed by researchers working on heart medications?

As the story goes, scientists for pharmaceutical giant Pfizer came across an interesting side effect during clinical tests. “The little blue pill” was later approved and marketed to treat erectile dysfunction (ED), and has since been prescribed for more than 20 years to tens of millions of men.

Here’s a not-so-fun fact. Viagra is also one of the most counterfeited drugs in the world. And if you try to order Viagra online especially if it’s incredibly cheap you could be getting fakes filled with potentially toxic chemicals.

Medications are cheap when they’re fake

When Viagra first hit the market, it was going for about $30 a pill. Yikes. Then, when it went generic in late 2017, the cost came way down. Since then, some pharmacies have even dropped the price to around $4 a pill.

Even so, a lot of men are still going online to get Viagra, or one of the generics. Maybe it’s for the savings or the convenience. Maybe it’s because they’re embarrassed, but either way they’re not hard to find on the web.

Some even go for as low as about $1 a pill. The problem is, a lot of these sites aren’t regulated at all and could very well be selling fakes with wildly varying ingredients from pack-to-pack.

 

HEART RATE APPS THAT DON’T REQUIRE A SMARTWATCH

 

In fact, it’s so bad that Pfizer even created its own security force to try to keep tabs on the fakes. Get this when Pfizer Global Security conducted a study a few years back, it found that about 80% of “Viagra” being sold online was counterfeit.

Dangerous chemicals in fake Viagra

Peddling fakes is big business, and just last year millions of dollars worth of counterfeit erectile dysfunction pills were seized around the world. One guy in Texas was arrested for selling thousands of fakes online for years.

Last October, two men were arrested for selling thousands of counterfeits in the Phoenix area. And at the beginning of this year, more than 6,000 pills were taken off the streets after a bust in Memphis.

It’s a big deal to law enforcement and health officials because these counterfeit pills can contain some pretty toxic stuff. As in, chemicals and other ingredients that can cause problems far worse than having, um, something lasting more than 4 hours.

And it’s crazy what Pfizer has found in some of the fakes. Some tried to make the little blue pill look like the real deal, so they used blue printer ink. That’s right, printer ink.

Other counterfeiters, to keep the pill from breaking down, went the construction site route and used drywall. Wow.

They also found Metronidazole, an antibiotic that can cause an allergic reaction along with some serious gastrointestinal side effects. And in some fakes, they found amphetamines. You know, speed.

Don’t be fooled by counterfeit medication

Pfizer also looked at other counterfeit medications besides Viagra, and found toxic ingredients like rat poison, floor wax, boric acid, brick dust even road paint. Yeah, the printer ink doesn’t sound so bad now, does it?

The World Health Organization says more than 50% of counterfeit drugs are made in labs in places like China and India. Then they’re made available all over the internet, ready to order. That’s why it’s important to know you’re getting real medication.

 

MAN LEARNS HE IS DYING FROM DOCTOR IN A ROBOT

 

The safest method to get your medications is still the traditional way: getting a legitimate prescription, and picking it up at your favorite local pharmacy. I’m also aware that it’s 2019, which means you can see a doctor via video-conferencing without ever leaving your house. You can also safely get medications online through reputable pharmacies and insurance providers.

If you do go on the hunt for medications online, look for sites with a VIPPS seal, which stands for Verified Internet Pharmacy Practice Sites. That means they’re properly licensed and they sell actual FDA-approved medications.

Still, nobody’s perfect so make sure you always check out the packaging and the pills, tablets, etc. first before taking them to make sure there wasn’t a mix-up.

Although Viagra is available over-the-counter in the United Kingdom, you still need to a doctor’s prescription here in the U.S. Sure, you might be self-conscious but at least you can be firmly confident it really is that little blue pill.

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