FDA has released a press statement with the warning regarding fake version of GlaxoKlineSmith's weight loss product Alli. The fake seems to replace the key ingredient orlistat with controlled substance sibutramine. Sibutramine is a drug that should not be used in certain patient populations or without physician oversight. Sibutramine can also interact in a harmful way with other medications the consumer may be taking.
How to spot a fake Alli?
The counterfeit Alli product looks similar to the authentic product, with a few notable differences. The counterfeit Alli has:
- Outer cardboard packaging missing a “Lot” code;
- Expiration date that includes the month, day, and year (e.g., 06162010); authentic Alli expiration date includes only the month and year (e.g.,: 05/12);
- Packaging in a plastic bottle that has a slightly taller and wider cap with coarser ribbing than the genuine product;
- Plain foil inner safety seal under the plastic cap without any printed words; the authentic product seal is printed with “SEALED for YOUR PROTECTION”;
- Contains larger capsules with a white powder, instead of small white pellets.
Pictures of counterfeit Alli samples provided by GSK are shown below.
Consumers who believe they have received counterfeit Alli are asked to contact the FDA's Office of Criminal Investigations (OCI) by calling 800-551-3989 or by visiting the OCI Web site (http://www.fda.gov/OCI).
Please watch out for the fake drug because it can be harmful for your body.