March 21, 2023 11:40 pm

MEXICO CITY (AP) — The U.S. State Division has issued a travel warning about harmful counterfeit tablets getting sold at pharmacies in Mexico that frequently include fentanyl.

The travel alert posted Friday says Americans must “exercise caution when buying medication in Mexico.”

Modest pharmacies in tourist locations and border regions at times sell drugs advertised as OxyContin, Percocet, Xanax and other folks devoid of a prescription.

The State Division warned that such tablets are frequently counterfeit and “may include deadly doses of fentanyl.”

“Counterfeit tablets are readily advertised on social media and can be bought at modest, non-chain pharmacies in Mexico along the border and in tourist locations,” it mentioned.

A study led by researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles located that 68% of the 40 Mexican pharmacies visited in 4 northern Mexico cities sold Oxycodone, Xanax or Adderall, and that 27% of these pharmacies have been promoting fake tablets.

UCLA mentioned the study, published in January, located that “brick and mortar pharmacies in Northern Mexican tourist towns are promoting counterfeit tablets containing fentanyl, heroin, and methamphetamine. These tablets are sold mostly to US vacationers, and are frequently passed off as controlled substances such as Oxycodone, Percocet, and Adderall.”

“These counterfeit tablets represent a critical overdose danger to purchasers who feel they are finding a recognized quantity of a weaker drug,” mentioned Chelsea Shover, assistant professor-in-residence of medicine at the David Geffen College of Medicine at UCLA.

Anecdotal proof recommend that the issue exists in beach resorts like Playa del Carmen and Tulum, not just in border cities.

The State Division did not respond to a request for comment on no matter whether any Americans had overdosed or died due to the Mexico drug sales.

A State Division spokesperson wrote in response to the request that “The U.S. Division of State has no greater priority than the security and safety of U.S. citizens overseas. We take seriously our commitment to give U.S. citizens with clear, timely, and reputable facts about every single nation in the globe so they can make informed travel choices.”

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