Ordering Pain Medications Online – Is it Legal to Order Medicines from the Internet?

Ordering Pain Medications Online – Is it Legal to Order Medicines from the Internet

Computer literate and internet-aware individuals are now making the shift to purchasing their necessities online, from shoes and clothes to food and medicines. Patients, especially the ones with the need for expensive medications are also exploring their options online.

Most of them are seeking ways to mitigate costs for their prescriptions and often, are even tempted to pursue outrageous measures just to save for their medications. Having said this, the question is: Is it really legal for buyers to order medicines from the internet?

Ordering Pain Pills Online Illegal: Are Online Drugstores Illegal?

Frankly, there is no law prohibiting consumers from purchasing their medicines online. Consumers are entitled to their own purchase decisions, be it purchasing their medicines from local drugstores or getting their medicines from web pharmacies. The Food and Drug Administration currently does not have any law prohibiting the buyers from purchasing their medicines from online vendors. However, to help consumers keep safe while purchasing medicines from online pharmacies, the Food and Drug Administration published guidelines should encourage the buyers to steer clear of nefarious web drugstore operators.

Here are some of the US FDA guidelines for medicine-related internet shopping:

  • Check the pharmacy license. According to the FDA, illicit web drugstores can make their shops look legit so it is important for the buyers to confirm if these stores are found on the state-specific board of pharmacy’s list. The FDA offers a database of state-licensed online pharmacies to refer to, just in case.
  • Verify if the online pharmacies ask for a prescription. The FDA encourages the consumers to shop only at websites that ask for a valid prescription before it dispenses the medicines ordered by the buyers.
  • See if the store offers a US telephone number or address (if they are located in the United States). FDA asks the consumers to check if a store has a verifiable phone number and address before using it. If the store has contact details available, consumers should test if the numbers are real or if they are fully functional. A fake number and a non-responsive team is usually a bad sign.
  • If the shop claims to be a legal pharmacy, make sure that it has a licensed pharmacist to dispense your medicines. Also be sure to verify the pharmacist’s license to see if it is valid and ask whatever questions you have in mind.
  • If the store has a VIPPS seal or any accreditation, verify these first. Shops claiming to be a part of an organization or claiming to have approval from some drug body should be verified first—it is important for consumers to take everything with salt first so they won’t end up scammed.

An Online Pharmacy Extension of a Local Pharmacy Chain

An Online Pharmacy “Extension” of a Local Pharmacy Chain

There are no specific classifications of online pharmacies, but there are online drugstores that are somewhat an extension of local pharmacy chains, like for instance, Walgreens, CVS, Walmart, and other local pharmacy names. They are legitimate and have almost the same contents as their local pharmacy counterparts—the difference is, they deliver the medicines to the buyers’ doorsteps. You can order pain medicines at these websites, but you can expect roughly the same local drugstore prices for the products. These online pharmacies will also require you to present you prescriptions for the pain meds you need.

An Online Pharmacy Example

An Online Pharmacy Example

Besides the online pharmacies affiliated with local drugstore chains, there are virtual drugstores you can call as “independent” or are operating on their own and have their own brands. These shops do not have physical stores but are capable of servicing consumers in almost all parts of the world.

Some unhinged online drugstores may not ask you for prescriptions for pain meds—it is up to you to evaluate the store well so you won’t end up getting scammed. As a general rule, make sure the store you’re shopping meds from is asking for valid prescriptions for your pain meds or is at least offering a medical evaluation.

Buy Pain Pills Online Reviews

There are some consumers who were able to write reviews for the websites they have successfully bought their pain medicines from and some who were able to discuss how their online experience with pain medicines went. Here are a few buyer stories about their online experience with purchasing pain medicines online:

Patient Experience with Online Pain Medicine Purchase

Patient Experience with Online Pain Medicine Purchase

According to the user Trishbell, she was able to purchase Tramadol online for 14 years. She did not mention anything about the quality of the product but mentioned that after 14 years of purchasing the drug online freely, FDA “scheduled” the drug, she was now unable to purchase it anymore and have experienced “the most terrible withdrawal” feeling ever.

Forum Comments for Online Pain Medicine Purchase

Forum Comments for Online Pain Medicine Purchase

Other forums also discussed online purchases for pain medicines and some buyers were asking about getting pain medicines without prescriptions. According to one “steve 1”, in England and Wales, even online stores are asking for prescriptions, but there are online pharmacies offering complimentary consultations so the buyers can get their pain medicines.

Buy Pain Pills Online from India: How Cheap are Pain Pills Online?

Online pharmacy prices for pain medicines offer consumers cost-effective choices for their treatments. Buyers can purchase the medicines at online pharmacies at utterly lower prices than the local drugstore prices so patients can purchase them in bulk, unlike at local drugstores.


Ordering pain medications online is one alternative to purchasing your stash from the local drugstore. However, before using online pharmacies, make sure you have consulted your doctor beforehand and have a valid Rx for your need. Also, be sure to select your online pharmacies carefully based on the FDA guidelines. If you want a shortcut, you can always use our curated list of Top Web Pharmacies for the current year for a selection of reliable online shops for pain medicines.