Counterfeit Ksalol tablets linked to deaths in Ireland

Falsified versions of benzodiazepine Ksalol – a brand of alprazolam sold by generic drugmaker Galenika – have led to several deaths and admissions to hospital in Ireland, according to local media reports.

Use of the pills, which are sold for as little as €2 apiece on the street and are known as ‘castles’, accelerated during the coronavirus lockdown, according to drug counsellor Michael Guerin of Cuan Mhuire treatment centres in an interview with

While some of the fakes have no active ingredient at all, some are thought to contain fentanyl and analogues that can be 100 times more potent than morphine, and up to 50 times more potent than heroin, raising the risk of overdose. Some also contain harmful substances including rat poison, according to the report.

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