How Do You Know if Your Medicine is Fake

General Health

How Do You Know if Your Medicine is Fake

The production and distribution of fake merchandise impacts the industry and can also potentially harm the overall health of a nation.


The World Health Organization (WHO) has estimated that 1 out of 10 medicines in low to middle-income countries are fake. As consumers, you always want what’s tried and tested for your family and healthcare is always at the top of your list. It is important that you buy your medicines from your trusted drugstores to avoid purchasing counterfeit medications. The prevalence of counterfeiting cannot be denied—from movies, clothing, music, medicine, and beauty products. The production and distribution of fake merchandise not only impacts the industry, but it can also be potentially harmful for the overall health of a nation. Both generic and branded medicines are counterfeited all over the world, most especially in parts of Africa and Southeast Asian countries.

In this article, we will tackle the dangers of consuming fake medicines and how you can avoid buying counterfeit Unilab products.

Dangers of taking fake drugs

Taking fake medicines can lead to serious health problems like drug resistance, increased morbidity, and even death. Counterfeiters may substitute the required ingredients with harmful toxins and other active components which may also result to allergic reactions and confusing adverse effects.

How to detect and avoid buying fake medicines

It may be difficult to identify if your medicine is authentic if you don’t have the proper equipment. Perhaps one of the easiest ways to determine if a product is fake is to carefully inspect its physical appearance. Take note of the following guidelines:

  • Look out for misspellings on the product information leaflet (if any).
  • Poor print quality on the package.
  • Color of the tablet if it is unusually lighter/darker.
  • Tablet/syrup tastes different.

Some counterfeiters may distribute products which are very identical to its authentic counterparts, so it’s essential that the lot/batch number is easily readable for verification purposes.

What you can do

It is of utmost importance that you only purchase your medicines from your trusted and licensed pharmacies and retailers. Never buy from unofficial sellers who may or may not be aware that they are distributing fake merchandise. Avoid purchasing your medicines from unauthorized online resellers who may try to lure you with lower prices and other promo deals. Always store your medicines in a cool, dry place or as indicated on its product leaflet to avoid potentially spoiling its active ingredients.

How to verify if your Unilab product is authentic?

We are always here to help you with your inquiries about our products. You may send us a message on our Official Facebook Page or call us at our hotline at 8-864522-1 (8-UNILAB-1) for product verification requests. Please have the following information on hand to proceed with the verification process:

  • Lot/batch # and expiry date (You may find it stamped in the foil pack or in the box)
  • Date when you bought the items
  • Name of the establishment/drugstore and address where you bought the product
  • Clear photos of the items (front and back)

General disclaimer

Always consult your doctor before taking any medicine. Your doctor will be in the best position to give the appropriate medical advice. For suspected undesirable drug reaction, seek medical attention immediately and report to the FDA at www.fda.gov.ph and UNILAB, Inc. at 8-864522-1 (8-UNILAB-1) or productsafety@unilab.com.ph. Always buy from your trusted drugstores and retailers.

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