Roche, the company that makes the prescribed cancer medication Avastin is warning patients and physicians about the counterfeit vials of this product that have been distributed. This fake cancer drug does not contain the key ingredient that makes it work. Avastin is used to treat cancers of the brain, colon, kidney, and lung and is a big money maker medication for Roche. This medication generates approximately six billion dollars a year.
The company is not sure exactly where the vials have been distributed or how many are in circulation but they do know that some have been distributed to United States health care facilities. The Food and Drug Administration and Roche are working together to find all the counterfeit vials to analyze their contents. The medication is administered in hospitals and doctor’s office.
Avastin is a medication is infused and is not something that would be in the patient’s hands so it is just the health care providers that should be looking for these counterfeit vials. To help the heath care providers, they need to check any vials of Avastin in their office to see if it has the word Genentech printed on the packaging. This is the word that should appear on all FDA-approved vials and cartons of Avastin. Two other items that can prove it is FDA-approved is the six-digit lot number without any letters and all of the packaging wording will be in English.
Roche believes that the medication with these lot numbers may be fake. They are B6011, B6010, and B86017. The FDA has requested that medical practices and hospitals who have purchased any Avastin from Quality Specialty Products who also does business as Montana Health Care Solutions. These suppliers are not authorized by the FDA to distribute Avastin.