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FDA Warns 21 Websites Marketing Unapproved Opioids

Posted 28 August 2018 | By Zachary Brennan 

FDA Warns 21 Websites Marketing Unapproved Opioids

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Tuesday took action to stem the spread of opioids online.

The agency warned four online networks operating 21 websites illegally marketing unapproved and misbranded versions of opioids, including tramadol.

“The illegal online sale of opioids represents a serious risk to Americans and is helping to fuel the opioid crisis. Cutting off this flow of illicit internet traffic in opioids is critical, and we’ll continue to pursue all means of enforcement to hinder online drug dealers and curb this dangerous practice,” said FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb.

In June, FDA sent warning letters to nine online networks operating some 53 websites for illegally selling unapproved and misbranded versions of opioids such as tramadol and oxycodone. on 27 June, FDA also hosted internet stakeholders, government entities, academic researchers and advocacy groups at an Online Opioid Summit to discuss how to take stronger action in combatting the opioid crisis by reducing the availability of illicit opioids online. 

The FDA requested responses from each of the companies within 10 working days. The networks receiving warning letters are:


All four warning letters note: “Offering unapproved opioids for sale is particularly concerning given their potential for abuse and dependency, especially amid the growing opioid epidemic in the U.S. On average, 115 Americans die every day from an opioid overdose. In 2016, opioids killed more than 42,000 people, surpassing even the number of deaths resulting from traffic accidents in the U.S.”


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