Fake Adderall Sold Online, FDA Warns

Counterfeit versions of Adderall, Teva Pharmaceutical’s widely used ADHD drug, are being sold online with the wrong active ingredients.

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On Tuesday, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warned that fake versions of Adderall — a drug used for the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, and narcolepsy — are being sold online.

The FDA says that rogue websites, distributors and counterfeiters may be targeting medications that are in short supply. As Healthland noted in January, doctors and drug companies were anticipating “widespread shortages” of ADHD drugs, including Adderall and Ritalin, because of disagreements between federal agencies over how much of the drugs’ active ingredient should be made available to drug makers.

(MORE: Does the ADHD Drug Shortage Herald a Crackdown on Stimulants?)

Preliminary lab tests by the FDA revealed that the counterfeit versions of Teva Pharmaceutical’s Adderall 30 mg tablets contain tramadol and acetaminophen, which are ingredients used to treat acute pain and are not the correct active ingredients in Adderall. Legitimate Adderall tablets should contain dextroamphetamine saccharate, amphetamine aspartate, dextroamphetamine sulfate and amphetamine sulfate.

According to the FDA news release, fake Adderall tablets are round and white without any letter or number markings. The tablets produced by Teva are round, orange or peach colored, and embossed with a “dp” on one side of the tablet and “30” on the other side. The Teva versions come in a 100-count bottle.

“The counterfeit versions of Adderall should be considered as unsafe, ineffective and potentially harmful,” the FDA says.

(MORE: ADHD Drugs Don’t Pose Heart Risks for Adults)

Here’s how you can tell your Adderall is counterfeit, according to the FDA:

1. The product comes in a blister package
2. There are misspellings on the package. For example:

  • The package reads “NDS” instead of “NDC”
  • “Aspartrte” instead of “Aspartate”
  • “Singel” instead of “Single”

3. The tablets are white in color, round in shape, and are smooth
4. The tablets have no markings on them

The FDA recommends that any person who has potentially purchased fake Adderall to stop taking the pills and talk to their physician.