Revista de Saúde Pública
On-line version ISSN 1518-8787
OBJECTIVE: To identify the main counterfeit drugs seized by the Brazilian Federal Police and the states where seizures have been made. METHODS: A retrospective descriptive study on expert reports produced by criminal investigators of the Federal Police between January 2007 and September 2010, in relation to counterfeit drugs, was carried out. RESULTS: The drugs with greatest numbers of seizures were selective phosphodiesterase-5 inhibitors that are used for treating male erectile dysfunction (Cialis® and Viagra®, mean = 66% ), followed by anabolic steroids (Durateston® and Hemogenin®: 8.9% and 5.7%, respectively). The greatest proportions of the counterfeit drugs were seized in the states of Paraná, Santa Catarina (both Southeastern Brazil) and São Paulo (Southeastern), and the number of non-authentic drugs sent for investigation increased by more than 200% over the study period. There were increases in seizures of smuggled drugs found together with counterfeit drugs: 67% of the seizures included at least one smuggled drug. CONCLUSIONS: Counterfeiting of drugs is a severe public health problem. Identification of the classes of counterfeit drugs present in Brazil and the main Brazilian states with this problem may facilitate future preventive and suppressive actions by the Brazilian bodies responsible for such actions.
Keywords : Counterfeit Drugs; Products Seizure; Product Surveillance, Postmarketing; Phosphodiesterase 5 Inhibitors; Anabolic Agents.