More turn to internet for illegal medicine
GROWING numbers of people are illegally importing drugs to treat impotence, hair loss and improve their mood. A total of 3,729 packages of illegal medication were seized in 2009.
This is a 19pc rise on the previous year. However, individuals are not being pursued by the authorities for buying the drugs for personal use over the internet.
The Irish Medicines Board (IMB) revealed that confiscated drugs included mood stabilisers, anti-impotence pills, weight-loss products, hair-loss creams, sedatives, anabolic steroids, anti-depressants and memory-enhancement aids.
The watchdog's annual report also revealed that it received 3,276 reports of suspected adverse reaction to drugs, "a small number of which resulted in a fatal outcome".
It said it received more than 900 adverse-reaction reports nationally about last winter's swine-flu vaccine.
"These reports were submitted on a voluntary basis by healthcare professionals and members of the public, either through the online reporting tool available on the IMB website, or by post or telephone.
"The IMB actively called for all suspected reactions with the vaccines to be reported as part of its national monitoring programme."