How to detect counterfeit medicines
In our time, ordering goods via the Internet is common. You find through the search or advertisements the online store, that you need. If you are comfortable with the price of the goods - you make an order. Then there is only a little wait for the delivery, and that's all - you have get it. All this applies to ordering medications on the Internet too, but there is one nuance.
Medications from well-known manufacturers are too expensive, so many buyers prefer to order analogs of known drugs - generics. In many countries, generic medicines are prohibited as violating patent law and, moreover, are considered to be not safe (this is a topic for another article, this is not the case now). Buyers are forced to make purchases in foreign online pharmacies with attractive low prices, but with an unknown reputation. People are afraid that they will receive forgery, counterfeit.
Having received by mail the ordered smartphone, sneakers and other, the buyer immediately upon receipt can determine the authenticity of the purchase. But what about the medicines? Counterfeits have the same color, shape and weight as the original tablets. We are often asked how to check at home whether they have received real medicines .
Well. Actually, there is a method, however, not very cheap. This is about the Raman spectrum analyzer, there are portable options of it. This miracle of technology is able to determine the composition of any chemical compound.
The meaning of the device is that a beam with a certain wavelength is passed through the sample of the substance to be tested, which, upon contact with the sample, is scattered. The obtained rays are assembled with a lens into a single beam and passed through a light filter separating the weak Raman rays from the more intense Rayleigh rays. Raman rays are amplified and sent to a detector, which detects the frequency of their oscillation. Each chemical substance has its own frequency of oscillations of Raman rays.
In the output, we obtain a frequency spectrum with maxima and minima. Maxima at a certain frequency tell us that the corresponding chemical substance is present in the test sample. For example, it can be the components of sildenfil in a tablet of generic Viagra. For simplicity of understanding, imagine that the spectrum of any substance is his fingerprints.
Several tens of thousands of standard spectra of all possible chemical compounds are stored in memory of the spectrum analyzer. The substance is determined simply by comparing the obtained spectrum with the reference spectrum.
All this is done by pressing the only button without any preparation of the object under study. Moreover, it is possible to identify through transparent and semitransparent barriers, i. e you do not even have to open a blister with pills. Just bring the blister with the pills to the emitter and press the button - after a couple of seconds, you will see on the display the spectrum obtained and the name of the substance to which it relates. Of course, provided that this spectrum is in the database of this device. If there is no such spectrum in the memory of the device, then you can add it there and give it a name. In the following tests, if such a spectrum is detected, you will see on the display the name given earlier.
Well, that's all. We do not know other fast and reliable ways to identify sildenafil or tadalafil in the field outside the chemical lab. We would say that such a device would be nice to have in every family, but there is one problem. It costs about $ 20,000 - $ 25,000.
So, good luck, guys. Well, seriously, just avoid online pharmacies with unrealistically low prices and promises delivery almost the next day. Most generics are delivered by airmail and delivery takes about 7 days on average, miracles do not happen.