The Food and Drug Administration is warning consumers about an unsafe, counterfeit version of the weight-loss drug Alli sold online.
FDA lab test found the counterfeit Alli has a different active ingredient, a stimulant found in prescription weight-loss drug. People using the fake Alli may be taking three times the usual daily dose of the stimulant if they are following the dosing directions for Alli.
This excessive amount of the stimulant may lead to stroke or heart attack in people who have a history of cardiovascular disease. Even healthy people can experience symptoms, including heart palpitations.
The counterfeit Alli product looks similar to the authentic product, with a few notable differences. The counterfeit Alli has:
- Outer cardboard packaging missing a "Lot" code;
- Expiration date that includes the month, day, and year (e.g., 06162010); authentic Alli expiration date includes only the month and year (e.g.,: 05/12);
- Packaging in a plastic bottle that has a slightly taller and wider cap with coarser ribbing than the genuine product;
- Plain foil inner safety seal under the plastic cap without any printed words; the authentic product seal is printed with "SEALED for YOUR PROTECTION";
- Contains larger capsules with a white powder, instead of small white pellets.