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The availability and acquisition of modafinil on the internet
journal contributionposted on 2019-09-01, 00:00 authored by S Dursun, Matthew DunnMatthew Dunn, Fiona McKayFiona McKay
Introduction and Aims: Prescription medications are readily accessible on both the dark and surface web. This study focuses specifically on modafinil. Modafinal is a medication that is used to treat sleepiness due to a range of sleep disorders, but is also used off-label as a cognitive enhancer. This study aimed to evaluate surface websites which sold modafinil to Australia to provide an overview of and to document the characteristics of surface web retailers. Design and Methods: An online search to identify online retailers selling modafinil was performed using three search engines. Retailers were included if they sold modafinil to Australia, as verified through the purchasing process. Thirteen retailers were included in the final sample. Results: Most retailers sold more than one product, with products being sold in tablet form the most common (88%). Retailers offered products of multiple strength, with the 200 mg product most common (51%). Most retailers included information on the side effects of the substances (77%), few listed any supporting evidence. Few listed information regarding legal status (24%). Most retailers used a number of features to indicate legitimacy. Discussion and Conclusion: This is the first study to document the characteristics of surface web retailers purporting to sell modafinil to Australia. Future studies may analyse purchased samples to identify potential counterfeit or poor-quality medications.