Social Anxiety Support Forum banner
1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,118 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
??
My doctor perscribed me with Prozac so i can get it from the pharmacy, but then she said, "they'll probably have the generic kind". what does that mean? what's the difference?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
129 Posts
Generic versions of drugs are available once the patent protections with the original developer have expired. It mainly effects the cost, the drug itself should be identical. Although I do recall reading some cases where people have switched from the original to generic and felt it didn't work as well or had new side effects.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
676 Posts
Some generic versions of meds have nearly identical effects to their brand names but in my experience (reading 1,000s of posts, and my own personal experience with meds) most of the time there is a noticeable difference. Unfortunately for our time and wallets, their is no other way to know whether the generic or brand name of a med will be more of a help for you other than to try them both out. If you find that a certain med is helping you a good deal but just isn't "quite there" then its a good idea to try the brand, or maybe a version of generic if you were originally prescribed the brand.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
984 Posts
They aren't exactly the same "The FDA requires the bioequivalence of the generic product to be between 80% and 125% of that of the innovator product." so there can be a difference they might also use different forms of the chemical which might drop it's effect. Still that isn't much of a difference, it's your cash, I would rather buy the generic.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
676 Posts
I'm not intending to turn this into a "is too, is not" battle, but I just wanted to say there is an overwhelming amount of evidence in the form of reports from people who have noticed significant differences in brand vs. generic meds. I have experienced it myself as well with many different kinds of meds. Hell, my boss was commenting off hand the other day that the pharmacy filled his zoloft with the generic and he had to call and complain to get them to refill it because the generic sucked so bad.

Heres just one example of a thread with people discussing this brand/generic issue. This thread is actually discussing the difference between two generics of the same med.
http://www.addforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=48086
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
38,431 Posts
The difference is price.

I read just yesterday that currently I think it was 72% of prescriptions filled in the US are generics.

It's standard pharmacy practice to dispense the generic version unless a patient specifically asks for the brand name. Given the often huge cost differential (that insurance is very unlikely to pay for) hardly anybody is going to buy a brand name if a generic is available.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,661 Posts
Is it really likely for there to be significant difference in 99% of cases? No. The 80-125% thing has been mentioned, and just because a brand of drug isn't the most popular, doesn't mean it's any different. I think there's a massive placebo effect going on for some people who look at a shiny box of brand name drugs and think "that must work".
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
38,431 Posts
They aren't exactly the same "The FDA requires the bioequivalence of the generic product to be between 80% and 125% of that of the innovator product."
What must be remembered is that this +/- 20% occurs between different lots of brand name drugs as well. Nothing made by humans is exact and each batch of brand name drugs can vary in potency by +/- 20% as well.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,661 Posts
I really don't see why they have to be so inaccurate. All you have to do is add a measured amount of drug to a measured volume of pill mixture; they must be pretty awful in their calculations.
 

·
crazy
Joined
·
2,067 Posts
Heres just one example of a thread with people discussing this brand/generic issue. This thread is actually discussing the difference between two generics of the same med.
http://www.addforums.com/forums/showthread.php?t=48086
Wow, this was eye-opening. I'd just assumed that generics had to be exactly equivalent to the brand, and that the government would enforce it with random testing. Wrong on the first count, not sure about the second. It sounds like the government lets them provide their own studies to show equivalence. Does the government even do random testing, or do they just wait until enough people complain and then look into it?

And why would the laws for generics be so lax that people would come to distrust them? [um, maybe the big pharma companies actually like these laws that allow crappy generics?]

And in addition to the possibly lower amounts of active ingredient (and what manufacturer wouldn't try to target the 80% level, hm?), there could be differences in the inactive ingredients, which could affect the drug's absorption rate.

Some quotes from the thread:

They aren't exactly the same "The FDA requires the bioequivalence of the generic product to be between 80% and 125% of that of the innovator product." so there can be a difference they might also use different forms of the chemical which might drop it's effect.

I'm a pharmacist for walgreens. We, at a store level, do not control which generic manufacturers are sent to us. Walgreens buys the cheapest equivalent manuf. available. In this case, corepharma is cheaper for walgreens to buy than barr. Walgreens makes more money using the corepharma generic.

generics do not have to have the "same" absorption rate and bioavailability rate as brand-name products.

Just because Corepharma tells the FDA that their product is equivalent, and the FDA tells consumers that the product is equivalent, doesn't make it true.
People, trust your own judgment.

Remember when BARR was fined for not putting enough active ingredient in their generic ADDERALL? I believe the same issue is going on here. I'm going to try to figure out if there is a way to request that the FDA do a random screening or test on the quality of their generics, just to ensure they're not doing what BARR did (until they got caught and fined that is)...

[It's up to the manufacturer to provide] research proof to indicate that the effects were equivalent. Note: The rules governing the independence of the research are quite accomodating.
[!]

Although they may be 'chemically equivalent', these things are total trash. As others have suggested, this is likely due to the way the pills are packed. Break apart a barr adderall and then break apart a corepharma and you will see how easily the corepharma crumbles in comparison. This poor packing causes the pill to disintegrate faster and the levo-amphetamines are too quickly absorbed which causes the negative side effects most people report (ie jittery feeling, dry mouth, etc)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4 Posts
Prozac is an Old Drug with Lots of Generics

Prozac has been around forever and therefore there are a ton of generics. At this point I would say that there is little concern in regards to strength of specific brands because there are SO many generics out there. Not to mention that Prozac generic is dirt cheap.

However, to answer your question though, the generic drug contains the approximately the same amount of active ingredient as the brand/trade name drug. What you have to understand is that regardless of brand or generic there will always be a variance in the amount of active ingredients in each capsule or tablet, in your case fluoxetine (trade/brand name: Prozac). It is impossible to get an exact amount right on the money regardless of manufacturer.

Say for example it is a 20mg capsule of Prozac (fluoxetine). Eli Lilly, the brand name producer of Prozac has certain fillers and the active ingredient of the antidepressant they manufacture the capsules pretty close to 20mg
(a little over, maybe a tiny bit less) and they also use lactose as a filler of the capsule.

A generic competitor, say for example, Sandoz Labs is making a generic formulation of the 20mg of fluoxetine (active ingredient in Prozac). So, in the capsule they are around roughly 20mg of fluoxetine and need a filler, but instead of lactose they use corn starch.

What is the difference here? Not much the one company (the one that creates trade/brand Prozac) uses lactose as a capsule filler with the fluoxetine (Lilly) while the generic manufacturer (Sandoz Labs) uses corn starch as a filler with a very close amount of fluoxetine to Lilly (20mg), but instead they use a filler of corn starch.

They are both delivering roughly the same amount of the drug (not exact because that is, at the molecular level impossible) but they are just using different filler ingredients.

So that's the basic idea to understand the concept of generic vs. brand. Sometimes the two formulations are identical ingredients.
 

·
Spectacular Member
Joined
·
21,089 Posts
They are not completely identical in abosrption rate, onset rate, potency, duration, nor peak plasma. People who think so are clearly misinformed or ignorant. The only part that is identical is the active medical ingredient is the same chemical makeup, thats it. If the brand name drug is extended release and there is a generic version of that. The generic version may may peak faster or slower than the brand name, it may also vary in the the total duration, the total effect of the drug, the fillers etc.

There is certain acceptable ranges set by each government on what percentage a generic drug can deviate from the brand name in each category.

Some drugs that I remember having significant differences to that of their brand name co-parts were Oxycontin, certain long acting versions of Ritalin, as well some as cholesterol medications.
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top