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Six Signs of Counterfeit BOTOX®

David Fuller

Last Updated On: April 19, 2024

The FDA and CDC recently observed an increased circulation of fake BOTOX® products in multiple US states, which left several patients hospitalized. In light of these recent reports, Med Supply Solutions, a global distributor renowned for medical and aesthetic supplies since 2016, reasserts its dedication to authenticity and safety. 

We’re here to help you recognize fake products and ensure maximum patient safety. Read more to learn the top 6 signs of counterfeit BOTOX®.

Key Takeaways

  • FDA and CDC are warning against the increased amount of fake BOTOX® in the US market.
  • Purchasing and administering counterfeit products puts your patients at risk. Knowing how to spot fake goods can be essential to protecting patient safety. 
  • Fake BOTOX® products can be recognized by unit size, packaging, holograms and LOT numbers.
  • You can count on the Med Supply Solutions team to assist you in finding authentic supplies.

Med Supply Solutions’s Safety and Compliance Measures

As a trusted supplier, Med Supply Solutions ensures that all of our products are procured directly from manufacturers approved by regulatory bodies such as the FDA, MHRA, and Health Canada. We enforce a strict supply chain policy to eliminate the risk of counterfeit infiltration. Adherence to Good Distribution Practice (GDP) standards is a cornerstone of our operations, ensuring every product is authentic and traceable with an original LOT number.

Contact us for any questions regarding the LOT number and product authentication.

Counterfeit Sellers Warning Signs

Having a trustworthy supplier like Med Supply Solutions is the first step in getting your supplies right. Here is how you can spot and avoid the unreliable suppliers:

  • No verifiable long-term track record. You should always opt for suppliers who have been in the market for at least several years. For instance, Med Supply Solutions is in business since 2016. 
  • Ads appear on questionable sites commonly associated with counterfeits, such as Alibaba. 
  • They accept only cryptocurrency, Western Union, or wire transfers. They do not provide traceable payment options like credit cards.
  • Absence of authentic customer reviews. When in doubt, check if sellers have reviews on sites like Trustpilot

How to Recognize Counterfeit BOTOX®?

The counterfeiters are becoming increasingly resourceful and often changing their methods. However, there are ways to recognize counterfeit BOTOX®:

  1. Unit Size

Authentic BOTOX® comes only in 50U, 100U, and 200U. In addition, fake products do not weigh the same as original products.

  1. LOT and Expiry Formatting

Fake products will frequently not use the same lot number and expiration formatting. Original may follow one format, such as x12345, while fake may be y12343yy.

  1. Inner and Outer Packaging Match

Sometimes, the LOT numbers, expiry dates, and language on the inner and outer packaging do not match. The inner vial may be fake, while the outer box may be legitimate. Some scammers collect and reuse boxes. Check if the vial LOT, expiry date, and language match the outer box.

  1. Product Quantity

Normally the BOTOX® vial will seem empty to the untrained practitioner because the active substance is a very thin film on the bottom. If a large amount of supposedly active substance is at the bottom of the vial, it should be an immediate reason for additional checks.

  1. Holograms

If the packaging does not have a hologram or multiple holograms are added as stickers, it is a sign of a potential fake BOTOX®.

  1. Incomplete Packaging

In some cases of fake BOTOX®, the top of the vial may be missing.

We’re Here to Help You Source Authentic Products

As mentioned in the FDA announcement: Currently, there is no indication that the reported events were linked to AbbVie’s FDA-approved BOTOX®, and the genuine product should be considered safe and effective for its intended and approved uses.

However, as counterfeiters continuously enhance their techniques, tracking their activities is becoming increasingly difficult. Attempting to do so can significantly disrupt your routine operations. To best protect yourself from fake products, relying on a reputable supplier like Med Supply Solutions is wise.

Please feel free to reach out and book a meeting if you have any further questions or concerns. Our team is ready to help.


  1. Research C for DE and. Counterfeit Version of Botox Found in Multiple States. FDA. Published online 2024. https://www.fda.gov/drugs/drug-safety-and-availability/counterfeit-version-botox-found-multiple-states 
  2. Research C for DE and. Know Your Source: Protecting Patients from Unsafe Drugs. FDA. Published online January 29, 2021. https://www.fda.gov/drugs/information-health-care-professionals-drugs/know-your-source-protecting-patients-unsafe-drugs 
  3. FDA Alert: Counterfeit Versions of Botox Found in Multiple States. Drugs.com. Accessed April 19, 2024. https://www.drugs.com/fda/counterfeit-versions-botox-found-multiple-states-14672.html
  4. CDC. CDC: Harmful reactions linked to botulinum toxin injections. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Published April 15, 2024. Accessed April 19, 2024. https://www.cdc.gov/botulism/outbreaks/harmful-reactions-botox-injections.html



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