The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) advised the public to take extra caution against the rise of fake over-the-counter medicines that could give unfavorable symptoms if taken.

FDA Director General Eric Domingo said in an advisory that the public should only purchase from licensed establishments. The department also recently verified that four popular drug brands had been counterfeited.

The following drugs are Ponstan (mefenamic acid, 500 mg tablet), Diatabs (loperamide, 2 mg capsule), Solmux (carbocisteine, 500 mg capsule) and Neozep Forte (phenylephrine HCl/chlorphenamine maleate/paracetamol, 2 mg/10 mg/500 mg tablet).

Moreover, the lot numbers of the counterfeit drugs are: 429-30228A (with expiry date of September 2024) for Ponstan; U018407 for Diatabs; U089493 for Solmux; and U261217 for Neozep Forte.

FDA explained that the logo security mark and knurling of the counterfeits do not match those of the authentic drug registered with the agency.

“All health-care professionals and the public are being warned against the proliferation of these fake medicines in the market which may cause adverse health effects to its users. All establishments are likewise being warned not to sell these counterfeit medicines,” according to Advisory No. 2020-1877-A.

Furthermore, Domingo advised local officials and law enforcement agencies to make sure that these counterfeits would be confiscated. 

He also encouraged the public to report those selling these counterfeit products through (02) 88095596 or email RJ Espartinez