Fake pharmaceuticals have been around for some time now, and Xanax (alprazolam) has been a common target. Drug suppliers are able to buy bulk quantities of alprazolam (or other benzodiazepine) powder for cheap and press pills themselves using pressing devices meant to make the end product look identical to real Xanax. In the past few years, though, we have seen a rise in pressed Xanax cut with fentanyl.
This phenomenon can be traced back as early as 2015, when a San Francisco woman overdosed on fake Xanax which was cut with fentanyl. In June 2019 an intern at DanceSafe, a harm reduction organization specializing in drug checking, published a post about the presence of fentanyl laced Xanax pills found in Atlanta, GA. Although it is unclear exactly how common fentanyl adulteration of Xanax is, we certainly advise that anyone buying Xanax on the black market check their pills using our test strips.