How many of you get e-mails on a regular basis offering popular prescription drugs online at discount prices? I suspect – like me – most all of you do. Lots of folks are getting their prescription drugs online and that’s a risky alternative to traditional pharmacies, in my opinion. It’s my belief that the millions of Americans who buy prescription drugs online are putting themselves in danger. There are a number of reasons so many people are turning to the Internet for prescription drugs. More and more people are finding themselves without health insurance coverage and are unable to afford the expensive drugs they need. Even those who have insurance find drugs to be very expensive. The Web appears to offer a cheaper alternative for them. It’s reported that some folks simply want to by-pass a doctor and buy online. It makes no sense for a layperson to go to the Internet and leave doctors completely out of the equation when taking drugs that have to be prescribed. It’s a very dangerous practice. Neither does it make sense to buy online – even at a cheaper price – and run a safety risk.
In some cases, the problem is the pills are either placebos, made of sugar with only a minimal amount of the drug in them, or are actually counterfeits. Some of the online drugs have been found to contain other substances that are dangerous, even potentially deadly. When an Internet drug is counterfeit, however, that creates a real danger. Most national drugstore chains, such as CVS or Walgreens, have their own Web sites, and so far as I know, those are completely legitimate. According to reports, most Canadian sites are considered safe, since they are regulated by that country’s government. But sites you become aware of from unsolicited, spam e-mails, could be operating offshore and be completely unregulated. Even though some Web sites where drugs can be obtained online are legitimate, I wouldn’t buy any prescription drugs online. The risk is simply too great. My advice has always been to stick with a local pharmacist – one whom you know and can trust – and that’s still my recommendation. Of course, your doctor should be the person who prescribes the medicines you should be taking and that’s a rule that should never be broken. Your doctor or local pharmacist – working together – protects you from the unknowns of the internet.
Source: CBS News
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