The People's Perspective on Medicine

Generic Drug Controversy Won’t Quit!

In identifying a generic drug as "identical" to its brand-name counterpart, the FDA actually permits a number of differences.
RX prescriptions

The FDA maintains that all generic drugs are “identical” to their brand name counterparts. Of course, the word identical does not mean the same thing to everyone. Most of us assume that identical means exactly the same. For example, identical twins have the same exact DNA. If you drop your iPhone down the toilet and want to replace it with an “identical” iPhone, you can be confident that your new iPhone is exactly the same as the old one.

“Identical” Is Different for Drugs

The FDA, however, has a different definition for identical, especially when it refers to generic drugs: “A generic drug is identical–or bioequivalent–to a brand name drug in dosage form, safety, strength, route of administration, quality, performance characteristics and intended use.”

What the FDA does not tell you in this sentence is that generic drugs can have different “inert” ingredients or fillers. In other words, all the other stuff except the active ingredient could be completely different. What’s more, the formulation can be be quite different. Take Wellbutrin XL 300, for example. This brand name antidepressant gradually releases the active ingredient bupropion over the course of a day. It uses a “membrane” technology for this slow release.

Budeprion XL 300

One generic equivalent, Budeprion XL 300, uses a “matrix” technology for its slow release. The same amount of bupropion (300 mg) is released, but the timing is quite different. Budeprion XL dissolves and releases its ingredient more quickly. The FDA confirms this in a report it has released on its Web site.

We have received hundreds of complaints about Budeprion XL 300 not behaving like the brand name Wellbutrin XL 300. In an unprecedented response to these concerns, the FDA and the manufacturer and distributor of Budeprion are planning a study. Perhaps we will learn if the two formulations are indeed “identical” or not. It will take time, however, to collect and analyze the data.

Update: When the FDA completed its study, it found that in fact Budeprion XL 300 was not identical to Wellbutrin XL 300. Read our story about it here.

Questions about Other Generic Drugs

Budeprion XL 300 is not the only generic drug raising questions. Over the last several years we have received hundreds and hundreds of complaints about a variety of generic drugs. They range from the generic form of the anti-seizure drug Keppra (levetiracetam) to the heart drug Toprol XL (metoprolol succinate), the heartburn medicine Prilosec (omeprazole) and the pain reliever OxyContin (oxycodone).

If you would like to report a problem with a generic drug, either side effects or lack of effectiveness, please add your comment below. Put the brand or generic drug name at the top of your comment. We will forward your story to the FDA.

Rate this article
star-fullstar-emptystar-fullstar-emptystar-fullstar-emptystar-fullstar-emptystar-fullstar-emptystar-fullstar-emptystar-fullstar-emptystar-fullstar-emptystar-fullstar-emptystar-fullstar-empty
4.9- 8 ratings
About the Author
Joe Graedon is a pharmacologist who has dedicated his career to making drug information understandable to consumers. His best-selling book, The People’s Pharmacy, was published in 1976 and led to a syndicated newspaper column, syndicated public radio show and web site. In 2006, Long Island University awarded him an honorary doctorate as “one of the country's leading drug experts for the consumer.” .
Top Screwups Doctors Make and How to Avoid Them
$15.00

It is a well-kept secret, but harm from health care is a leading cause of death in this country. Get practical suggestions to protect yourself and loved ones from medical mistakes & drug disasters.

Top Screwups Doctors Make and How to Avoid Them
Join over 150,000 Subscribers at The People's Pharmacy

We're empowering you to make wise decisions about your own health, by providing you with essential health information about both medical and alternative treatment options.

Showing
100
comments (230 total)
Comments
Add your comment

Zydus Topomirate not effective. Migraines start, neurological problems. Definitely qualifies as an ADR (Adverse Drug Reaction) that needs to be reported to the FDA.

After years of trying anything and everything other than a narcotic painkiller, my chronic, and permanent, health conditions/diseases have left me in the position of having to take oxycodone daily. I have no difficulty with this and I’m fortunate in that my doctor is very responsible.

Unfortunately, when I switched insurance during the year this year, my new pharmacy gets their oxycodone from KVK- Tech. The effectiveness of the medication is drastically different! I’ve given it three months now and my pain has increased by quite a bit and I am no longer able to get the kind of sleep that I require, which only adds to my pain issues. I’m frustrated by the frequency with which I am told that I can’t be experiencing what I am experiencing because, “the generic is identical to the brand name.” Clearly, there is at least the possibility that it is NOT, according to the FDA’s study of Wellbutrin and it’s generic. I would argue strongly that it absolutely is not the same, and it is definitely less effective.

As incredibly difficult as this has made my life so far, I think about people who take this medication for something even more serious, such as pain from a terminal cancer case, and I shudder. This is horribly irresponsible and someone has to at least try to look into the glaring differences between generic and brand names when it comes to pain medication of all kinds!

If you are able to pass this information on, that would be wonderful! I’ve spoken to many people about this, and while it’s not always the same manufacturer, it is frequently the case that others experience what I have when taking a generic. Thank you for reporting about Wellbutrin, and for being willing to report anyone’s comments to the FDA!

I am a prescriber for weight loss medications. We use phentermine and have noted that the generic phentermine made by KVK tech is sub standard. The pill has changed, more white with very few blue specks. Many patients report that it does not work like previous pills they have taken. More side effects such as increased dry mouth, headaches, and not effective as appetite suppressant. We hear this from our patients who have take phentermine off and over over many years, and they noticed the pill is different.

I have taken Metformin over the last 5 years from the same pharmacy. I was also ignorant to the fact that generics are not all equal. Every single time I was getting a refill I was getting it from a different manufacture. Every single time like clockwork for 3 – 4 days of a new refill I warned my family that I would be angry. I mean in rages over the littlest thing. I figured it out after calling several pharmacies to determine if my hunch was right. Once I micromanaged the pharmacy to fill the prescription from the same manufacturer the bouts of anger and rage disappeared! WHY does the pharmaceutical industry think it’s OKAY to not inform patients UP FRONT ?!?! I wonder how many people have ended up on Rx anti-depressants as a result??

The activist tranquilizer is worthless. My pharmacy just switched me to another med, which was OK, from Teva which was best generic Clonapazam.

I was diagnosed w/ an inoperable brain tumor 16 yrs ago. After an open biopsy, I now have epilepsy. I have 2 or 3 seizures per week. This week 10/15/18, I found that Mylan stopped producing zonisamide.

They actually notified the FDA in June 2018.

There is presently no system to communicate this info to patients. (I take 500mg/day which is substantial.)

***All generics are not created equal and, in my opinion, it is very hard on the human body to “switch” between different manufacturers.***

I have tried other manuf of zonisamide to no avail. I am concerned for my wife, my daughter and of course myself.

***All medical providers, insurace companies and pharmacies should be required to pull “planned discontinuations of medication” from the FDA data files daily.***

This should not be a difficult task w/ today’s technology; then the info could be quickly passed to patients if they wish. (in my case possibly life or death)

If I would have had time to wean off Mylan zonisamide things may have been easier. Now I have only two weeks.

To reiterate:
1. Please write the FDA, your medical providers, Congresspeople and others to make sure your generics are not being “switched.” Also, ask for the requirement for a daily FDA download of “manufacturers ending production.”
2. Have a back-up plan, alternative med? that you know works for your body. I surely wish I had.
Blessings

Phentermine by KVK:
Sandoz they say, stopped making Phentermine. They gave me KVK. I have taken this for years with no bad effect. The KVK shot my blood pressure up. headache, jaw pain just awful. Pharmacists will not order Sandoz for less than $100 they say because of the price difference.
2nd Issue Tetracycline- under $10 when withdrawn from Market under Obama. Rereleased at $607! Average is even more. No patent on the drug and now outrageous in the USA.
Only real treatment for Lyme Disease which I have had since 1993. ( my old doctor refused to run the 2nd test confiming it is what I do have) Now I can’t afford the treatment!
They have done this with several drugs per my pharmacist, who says they want to do the same with Soma now. Cheap and effective sleeping pill,unlike new hypnotics, muscle relaxer. out of patent generic like tetracycline was. So, is it US Manufacturers or the pharmacies making more money?

I am glad I found this page, but sorry to see that others are having bad experiences with poor quality/ineffective generics too. My pharmacy switched to Zydus paroxetine last year and I took it for several months all the while feeling increasingly lousy. I became very depressed, irritable, and even began experiencing side effects I never had with other paroxetine generics (mostly Apotex). I wish I had figured it out sooner that the Zydus generic was no good. I asked my doctor to put me back on name brand Paxil, which unfortunately is very expensive these days, but right now I don’t have any other option than to pay the high price. It’s much better than what ever they are putting in that crap from India. Good luck everyone!

My doctor prescribed Meloxicam 15 mg for daytime use for my severe total body autoimmune pain which is crippling me severely. I filled the prescription at Publix and when I received it found it was made in India by Zydus which has been investigated by the FDA many times for poor quality generic drugs.

I have tried the tablets twice and can verify that there is no pain reliever in them whatsoever–NOTHING! I am a retired nurse–so believe me– I am very aware if a drug is working or not.

I had told Publix that I wanted only generics from American companies (“Authorized Generics”) but they substituted these cheapies. Needless to say, I won’t be going back to Publix again!

Please Look into Oxycodone 30 Mg Tablets Manufactured by KVK TECH. These pills do NOT work for pain, they are so ineffective and cause so many side effects for people that there is no way they are putting anywhere near the correct quantity of “Active” ingredient in these pills.

Furthermore, they cause Severe Headaches, Bladder Infections, Withdrawal Symptoms, Terrible tiredness like you have literally taken a “Sleeping Pill” that includes a terrible feeling hangover effect that last for hours yet…your in withdrawals? I honestly beleive this company is putting sleeping medication in the pills to try to pass them off as opiates.

However, Opiates do not cause that much of a sedative effect with a sickeng”Hangover” feeling. They may be getting the “Active” ingredient “Oxycodone” for use in manufacturing the pills but I firmly believe only a very, very, very small amount is actually going into the manufacturing process…Where the rest of the oxycodone is really going someone needs to find out..Something is very, very wrong with the Quality of this medication.

A full Un-Announced investigation needs to be done in this company ASAP. Just Google “KVK TECH OXYCODONE” You will find so many complaints about how ineffective these pills are its unbeleivable that nothing has been done yet to look into this many complaints. I URGE SOMEONE TO PLEASE INVESTIGATE THIS COMPANY. The oxycodone is going somewhere….just not in the pills they are manufacturing.

YES, YES, YES! I have taken oxycodone 15mg for over 5 years. This medication changed my life. It improved my quality of life significantly all these years, and with health insurance I got the same brand every month (for over 4 years – Activis) but when I lost my job and ins. coverage 9 mo ago)I started getting different brands that have terrible and varying side effects (rash, itching, headaches, nausea – these are all related to opiate withdrawal which indicates they are not the same as what I have been taking for years) but the KVK brand I got last month was the absolute worst. I had NO real pain relief and was so sleepy that I was not able to do my normal daily activities, AND THE ITCHING WAS AWFUL. PLEASE TAKE THIS OFF THE SHELVES OF EVERY PHARMACY, AND STOP THE MANUFACTURING OF BOGUS SUBSTITUTES FOR PAIN MEDICATIONS. KEEP CHRONIC PAIN PATIENTS OUT OF THE EMERGENCY ROOM.

I just got my prescription filled for Oxycodone 20 mg and they’ve changed the manufacturer to kvk Tech or whatever it’s called and I have a rash all over my body and I can hardly breathe and I’m just stuck with this medicine or else just going to kill me or else I have to be in pain what should I do

I just got a prescription for generic doxycycline made by Actavis. I have taken this antibiotic many times with no issues. However, this time I had to discontinue it after a couple of days due to intense pain in my stomach. It felt like something had eaten a hole in my stomach. I knew it was this manufacturerer causing the problem.
I stopped the medicine and took some from a different manufacturer I had left over from being sick before. No pain. From now on I will call ahead to make sure I don’t get Actavis. I also had problems with a generic for Inderal to regulate my heart beat. The generic slowed my heart to 50 bpm and my pulse is normally 70-80. The doctor told me to never accept generic again for my heart. He told me to ask my insurance company”‘s pharmacist when was the last time he diagnosed and prescribed a medicine for a patient. I did….told them if I died from this generic my family would own him and the insurance company. I was called back in a half hour saying they would approve the brand. The fillers they are ising are killing us. How do we stop it?

Please file a formal complaint to the FDA! I am on same meds and have been ripped off for the last 4 months. We have to make them accountable! Good luck

I totally agree with you I’ve been going to the same Pharmacy been getting the same manufacturer for the last 6 months not a problem and these are kvk Tech I just picked up my prescription Tuesday and they’ve been giving me violent headaches my stomach’s in knots never had these symptoms he’s either so strong I can only take a half of one about every 8 hours

I am having issues with Zydus Paroxetine 30mg. Feeling overstimulates and anxious. Something is wrong with this stuff. I have been on Paxil for 20 years and haven’t had issues until I switched pharmacies.

Omeprazole 20mg capsule Sandoz Ltd SZ90717FL01B. I have taken omeprazole 20mg twice a day for years. These have now recently changed to smaller, white capsules which only work for a short period of time. They take a long time to work, and the effect wears off quickly, so that I find myself in pain even when taking them, for some time. With the old capsules, I would take one in the morning and one at night, and never be in pain from reflux. The change to the effectiveness causes me problems, as I have to take Omeprazole away from other medications that I take, and I cannot now judge when I will need the Omeprazole.

My pharmacy knows that I cannot take ZYDUS brand lamotrigine (generic for lamictal). This is an anti seizure medication that I take for multiple things. I was taking TEVA USA brand, but one day the pharmacy switched me to ZYDUS.

Within an hour of taking my first pill I was throwing up. I had all the signs of withdrawing off of my medication not to mention all of my symptoms came back. I also had new symptoms like constant nausea, burning headache, and heart palpitations. The pharmacy knew right away it was the manufacturer so they told me to hang tight for that month, and then they ordered my old brand.

This could have ruined my life. I’m reporting it now because I have the flu, the only Tamiflu left in town, one box, was by ZYDUS. Within 30 minutes of taking it I have a horrible burning headache that goes down the side of my neck. Possibly flu symptoms but it made me curious if this company had ever gotten any better, so I googled it. This is how I found this page. I decided to go ahead and put my two cents out there. thanks

Topamax by Zydus Pharmaceuticals
Something is wrong with this medication!!! My 2nd refill was with this brand, and within 10 days I couldn’t sleep, had tingling in face, feet, nausea all day, heart racing. I thought it was side effects but on my 3rd refill the insurance company made me change pharmacies(thank God). My script was filled by Glenmark pharmaceuticals. Within 2 days I was beginning to feel better, and within 10 days back to normal!!!! So I did search on Zydus/Topamax ….. quite a few people have the same complaint/problem.

I have been taking teva tramadol for 19 years. Lately the CVS and Walgreens have stopped carrying the teva brand. I usually need 3 a day, but these round white crappy ones just get worse and worse and now I have to take six a day!! I would like to know what’s going on I already have to take enough medicine and this problem has only happened when teva brand is not available.

Omeprazole by Zydus. In the last month I have experienced heartburn at night and during the day. I take 20 milligrams AM and PM.

Medication Topiramate
Zydus Pharmaceuticals

There is definitely a difference! I was on name brand Topamax and switched to generic due to insurance change and they would not cover name brand. Within a few days I was having terrible headaches and nausea. After calling my doctor, he said to discontinue the meds and go back to name brand for a few days. The symptoms stopped within 12 hours. The following week, I started back on the generic prescription and had the same reaction. I have taken generic Topiramate from other pharmaceutical companies and have not had this reaction. Just Zydus. My neurologist tried sending to appeal to Express Scripts to get coverage for Brand name but to no avail.

Actavis oxycodone 10 325

Actavis oxycodone 10 325 are from India distribution is from PHILADELPHIA. No they are not the same strength. They are shipped from India. They sit in hot shipping containers for days, possibly weeks. How hot? 110 to 123 degrees according to a report done by U.S. Army Transportation Engineering. A more recent study suggests that temperatures under our recent extreme climate can reach up to 135 degrees. I do know that medications have specific requirements for temperature and longevity in heat. Just figured it out. The inert ingredients differ as well. I’m getting migraines. Literally sick and tired of doctors and pharmacists telling me they are the same. If they look different, they are different. Spread the word, write the FDA.

I have been on Topamax since 2004 for migraines. My dose has been as high as 400mg/d (after viral meningitis), but normally stable at 200mg/d. I’ve been on name brand and generic and have been well maintained. I got a 90-d supply in July through Express Scripts and had the worst summer since starting Topamax.

I’ve had daily headaches, 3-4 breakthrough migraines/week. It felt like I just stopped my topamax. I did some research and realized I was given generic by Zydus (first time). In the past I’ve had Teva or brand. There is something wrong with Zydus generic!

My insurance wanted $1600 co-pay for 90d medically necessary name brand Topamax. My neurologist just switched me to Trokendi ER 200mg. Keeping my fingers crossed.

I have noticed that over the course of developing a relationship with real estate owners, you’ll be able to come to understand that, in most real estate contract, a percentage is paid. Finally, FSBO sellers do not “save” the percentage. Rather, they fight to win the commission simply by doing a strong agent’s work.

In this, they devote their money as well as time to carry out, as best they can, the obligations of an real estate agent. Those assignments include exposing the home by means of marketing, showing the home to prospective buyers, creating a sense of buyer desperation in order to induce an offer, arranging home inspections, dealing with qualification inspections with the bank, supervising maintenance tasks, and aiding the closing of the deal.

Brand: Adderall XR 20 mg
Generic: dextroamp-amphet er 20 mg cap
Manufacturer: impax generics

Have taken generic adderall from other manufacturers in 10 mg doses (2 pills for 20 mg). The above generic I’m currently taking has no effects for me at all, it is as if I’m taking a placebo.

Generic Drug Controversy Won’t Quit!

The problems in this thread regarding generic pain medication sounds just like the problems I have been experiencing with my pain medication, Percocet 10/325.

More Doctors need to be aware of this problem and insist on the original manufacturer. It’s hard enough to get the proper dosage of pain meds that really work. And don’t even get me started on all the other problems associated with filling your RX when the doctor does give it to you. I have documented medical records showing all the problems I have that require me to take this medication but that still comes with many problems.

It is very obvious the overseas drug companies and maybe even our own here in the states are cutting corners to make a buck and it needs to STOP. WE ARE SUFFERING!

I hope everyone writes, tweets, emails, and snail mails to the FDA members about this problem and what they are doing about it.

Below is the next meeting.
March 15, 2017: Pharmaceutical Science and Clinical Pharmacology Advisory Committee Meeting

There is absolutely a difference. I have been on KVK-TECH oxycodone for a while now and they didn’t have them fully in stock so they switched me to Zydus brand and I felt like death. Hot sweats, chills, headache, nausea, and very little pain relief. It was awful and it took all day to get it switched out. I still feel the affects of it.

The generic for Tramadol manufactured by Zydus Pharmaceuticals is completely useless. I have used the generic from their competitor Teva Pharmaceuticals USA Inc in the past and it was highly effective.

I am having the exact same experience. What did you do?

I also am prescribed 15 mg oxycodone and am receiving Actavis brand. I have always taken my medicine as directed and thought maybe it was a tolerance thing for the past couple of years. I have severe chronic pain issues, and until the Actavis name came about, I could feel some relief from my pain.

As for the fatigue and forgetfulness, my god!! I am barely functioning anymore. I feel like I have a severe form of dementia. I fall asleep everytime I stop moving! I literally have no quality of life anymore. Something really needs to be done about this. It’s a crime. God only knows what we are taking anymore. I am unfunctionable with the pills due to effects, and also without due to chronic exasperating pain. HELP!!!

I also was switched to Actavis Oxycodone I had been on Watson brand and it was excellent–but the company was sold in a roundabout way to Actavis.

I am a retired nurse and immediately recognized that the Actavis oxcodone was nothing more than cheap Benedryl which I cannot tolerate because I have the same symptoms that you are describing! So I researched the problem with generics made in India and found that the FDA discovered that some of the Indian generics were nothing more than talcum powder or chalk powder!!!

One company was fined $500 million dollars. Since then I have started refusing all generic drugs made in India and asking for FDA Authorized Generics instead.

You can Google: “List of FDA Authorized Generic Drugs,” which also includes the American manufacturer. See if your drug is on the list and who the manufacturer is.

I had to call several pharmacies until I found one who was willing to order my oxycodone from that manufacturer. Hope this proves helpful to you!

I’ve switched from Prevacid, to nexium, to finally Prilosec after spending a summer bent over the toilet because my GERD was so bad. I finally did really well with the generic of Prilosec. One day I went to a different pharmacy and the capsules were purple and white as opposed to the usual yellow color. I’m extremely sensitive to medication changes and was hesitant. I took the capsule anyway and went about my day. Suddenly I was overwhelmed with intense anxiety to the point of sweating and tears. I had no reason to be anxious but couldn’t shake it. I took Xanax (which I’m prescribed for panic attacks) and it did nothing.
The next week of taking this genetic this continued. I couldn’t sleep, and if I took it before bed I would
Wake up (why I’m awake now) with anxiety. And the most hilarious part is it’s not even treating my GERD. I’ve been throwing up all week. However for some reason Medicaid can’t seem to understand the concept that a certain manufacturer produces a different drug.
The pharmaceutical industry in this country is a joke.

Having the same problem with Generic Esomeprazole Magnesium 20mg made by Mylan. I find myself having to double-up the dosage for acid reflux. Bad LOT/Batch or bad manufacturing.

I forgot to mention, the capsules are produced by Zydus.

Wellbutrin XL300-for a fortunate reason the first time I picked up my prescription I received Wellbutrin XL300. After the first 90 days I felt emotionally and physically great. On my second refill I received the generic version manufactured by Zydus. After three weeks I was getting ready to order my next month. It felt as if I was taking a placebo so I told my pharmacist that I don’t want the generic because somehow it wasn’t working for me. He explained to me how they were ‘chemically identical’. But they aren’t. This month I hashed a different pharmacist the same questions so she has me on Anchen. After 7 days I don’t feel better I actually feel more depressed. I don’t know what I can do. Wellbutrin is now over $1500/mo. Prozac did nothing either. That’s why I switched. If anyone has any advise please let me know. Can you get a discount from the manufacturer?

Hi. I’ve been taking Citalopram for many years. It has kept me even through retirement, serving as a juror on a pretty awful criminal trial, and my husband’s stroke and successive hospitalizations during the past summer.

In late autumn, Walgreens refilled my prescription with a different pill made by a different company. Almost immediately I felt like I’d just stopped my anti-depressant cold turkey. I’ve basically cried and yelled my way into the new year and was still crying yesterday on Valentine’s Day. When I complained to the pharmacist, he said it might be taking me awhile to adjust to the new formula. I have to tell you, a sugar pill would work better than this.

The pill is a round pink tablet. Side 1: MX32. Citalopram 20 mg. Manufactured by Mylan.

I became so ill after Express Scripts switched to Zydus Pharmaceuticals generic omeprazole that my MD ordered an endoscopy to make sure I did not have esophagus cancer. I was sick for almost 3 months, and am still having issues almost a year later.

I have been taking Prilosec by AstraZenca for 20 years and have had no GERD problems at all. As of November 1, 2015, I was advised by my CVS pharmacy that AstraZenca had stopped making the drug and I would now have to take a generic. I have taken a generic Omeprazole 20mg by Zydus Labs for 40 days now, and it is NOT the same. I am burping all the time and have reflux and choking, something I never had with the brand name Prilosec. I am fortunate that my insurance has paid 80% of the cost (over $200 month).

I have had bad luck in the past with the generic form of Mobic, which did not relieve the pain from my arthritis in my knee, quite the opposite. The Lab had stopped producing brand name Mobic for about 4 months last year because ‘they couldn’t get one of the ingredients’. I found it odd that if they couldn’t get an important ingredient, how was a generic made.

What do I do now? I researched Prilosec and found that the brand name is made with Omeprazole MAGNESIUM but the generics are not. Where can I find Omeprazole MAGNESIUM?

I have had the same problem as you. I researched and found Walgreens and Walmart have an over the counter omeprazole magnesium. I am going to try one of them. Good luck to you!

My first generic flomax was made by one company which was barely tolerable. In the second prescription the pharmacy changed manufacturer and this generic was far worse and not as effective. If the FDA is not directly monitoring these drugs then there are unlikely to have the necessary ingredients to be effective.

Since when is the “honor system” effective for prescription drugs. Besides, the binders may also play a role in the dispersal of a drug in the body. All in all Congress fails again in allowing potentially unsafe or ineffective drugs. What a mess because I am trying to search for the drug store chain that carries the first generic I used. This is no way to run health care.

Everything Teva makes is garbage.
Sun Pharmaceutical Bupropion is very weak.

I recently change pharmacies, due to an insurance change and they request Walgreens is their preference for the best value. I have been taking Omeprazole for many years, it was a yellow and white capsule. I started Walgreen’s generic of this which is a tan capsule. I right away felt very exhausted. I started dizziness, migraines and feeling jittery. Sunlight bothered my eyes. I felt congested and also had gas pains in stomach. I was so tired, so after about 2 weeks on Walgreen’s Omeprazole, I realized that this was the only different medicine or brand that I had changed. I was just considering what had caused my symptoms, when I realized this. I have stopped the medicine and have heartburn, so I will have to pay for another medicine over the counter to help treat this. My conclusion as each of us is different and reactions to medicines can be different, is that whatever they are using in the fillers, I may be allergic to, I am waiting to call pharmacy for 2 more days just to see if any symptoms come back, but truly think it is Walgreens generic Omeprazole. When I read the side effects, and the rare side effects, there it was in the prescription leaflet attached to the generic medicine, I have the worst side effects, maybe worse due to filler.

I am a compounding chemist by trade. I chose not to write a dissertation as to why I am forced to use a narcotic pain reliever but I am medically administered the medication after failed surgeries. I hate taking it. I don’t get high. I’ve never taken it ‘not as prescribed’.

I think I am ‘sensitive’ to drugs more than other people. I can tell when the waitress gives me pepsi and not coke. I can tell my burger was cooked in a pan where onions were previously cooked. I have a sensitive palette.. and I can smell things before they happen. Its not a gift, its a curse.

That being said,. my pharmacist was special ordering my Endo 10/325’s and then due to February ‘not having as many days’ (this is the excuse given to me) my Rx didn’t show up. No problem I have a bottle put away so I gave them a few days.. and then a week. After 10 days it was not arriving. I asked my friend the pharmacist, . What brand do you have? HE said Watson. I said Ugh, but ok just fill it. I am so tired of coming here. I never looked at the pill. I saw white and ‘assumed’ (insert that saying here,. about assuming)..

After a day or so….. Headaches,. drowsy,. I left candles burning overnight. I forgot formulations. I was forgetting simple names, . mid sentence,. I thought I was having a stroke. I fell asleep on the TOILET…. woke up and my legs were asleep. It didn’t dawn on me to LOOK at the pill. And there it was A333. I spent all night googling Actavis. The merger. The fact that Actavis doesn’t manufacture pain pills. I read warning letters and recall warnings on products in quality control. The tablet centers were caught taping hoses that had active ingredients blowing out,. I mean. ,letter, after letter after letter. You can read them too just google things like Actavis warnings, complaints, RECALL, etc. And then read and use keywords to dig more.

This is a financial windfall for several pharmaceutical companies to merge like this. When Watson handed the keys to Actavis they didn’t hand them ‘grannies secret codeine recipe’. They got the accounts and then Actavis called their suppliers in INDIA and GUAM and said “we need some pain pills el-rapido”

FDA doesn’t regulate these medications. The biggest issues pharma companies have is import/export. Nobody tests the product. Nobody regulates the product. And here is where MY experience differs. 2013-2014 everyone flooded FDA and ACTAVIS with complaints about ineffective pain meds.

The new word for generic isn’t bio identicals. ITS BIO SIMILARS. ” Make us a pain pill that looks like a pill,. tablets-up (presses well) Can be imprinted and offers an Analgesic reaction “FOR THE LOWEST PRICE POSSIBLE”. Well the pharma companies said “no problem boss”.. And BIO SIMILARS WERE created and are now flooding the pharmaceutical world.

In my case I believe that those complaints caused them to tweak their formulation,. What is the most ironic thing is that I can take one pill and feel very little. The second one makes me forget my name. Head pain following gut rumbling. Take one at bedtime and I sleep like I’ve been given a roofie. I wake up in agonizing pain so the pills do not have the codeine that sends signals to the brain receptors. This is a tranquilizer of some type,. enough to shut the patient up who needs pain relief.

The side effects? I am not sure yet what the long term residual effects are. We are talking about INDIA here,. so imagine a pharmaceutical version of lab created pain killer. You know how you watch TV and almost every day you see a Law Office of DoWeCheatumAndHow citing a class action suit against XXX maker of XXX medication,. permanent injury like renal failure, heart valve swelling etc etc. This is how that starts.

One thing you CAN do,.is learn about WHO distributes your medication and whether or not they manufacture it or they buy from one of the hundreds of international pharmaceutical companies all over the world. Get smart. And don’t just do it with your pain pills. Do it with everything you take.

I also use LIDODERM for neuropathic numbing. I got my box of numbing sheets and it said LIDOCAINE 5 ON IT,. I was puzzled, looked nothing like Lidoderm. I opened one up, pulled it off the backing and it rolled up and stuck to itself. I fought with it trying to roll it flat, trying to affix it to my skin,. I put it on my arm,. and waited.. and waited. No numbing. Nothing. And because I’m a crazy chemist I touched it to my tongue. NO NUMBING,. couldn’ t taste the lidocaine. IT WAS NOT PRESENT IN THIS PRODUCT.

I got my magnifier out.. and almost fainted when I read “manufactured by Actavis” . Another BIO SIMILAR. LOOKS LIKE LIDODERM. Same size. Same feel,. Similar enough to pass off to a customer who would not really notice. I checked my insurance and they charged $150 for a box of 10. The next thing I am doing is meeting with my broker and making sure my annuities are well invested in pharmaceutical R&D and merger acquisitions. If I’m going to suffer in pain, I might as well earn some residuals.
Love and Light,. Julie

Was taking 20.6mg Prilosec for two months which gave complete relief of my acid related stomach pain. It was the first time in years I had felt this good. Then BCBSRI refused to pay for it and I was switched to the generic omeprazole and within 3 days the pain is back. Neither my PCP nor gastro doc believe me. I’ve tried everything else possible in OTC and nothing works. I’m appealing the insurance company but I don’t have much hope. The relief was certainly nice while it lasted.

ESOMEPRAZOLE MAG DR 40mg

After I was diagnosed with acid reflux my doctor prescribed Nexium DR 40mg for treatment. I’ve had good success with this medication if taken every day and not skipping a dose.
Recently it was time for a refill, to which I picked up my medication, get it home only to find out that Lil “purple” capsule is now “blue” with a sticker on bottle by pharmacist stating “this medication is the same but may be a different color, size or shape.
I have had more acid reflux since starting on this bottle than I have had in years! There is no way it is the exact/identical to its brand name NEXIUM! I do want to add, I do not have a problem with generic drugs if they perform the same as the brand but when my Acid Reflux wakes me during night from a night of resting, I definitely have a problem!

For years I took Dilantin 100mg capsules.

Some time ago my doctor okayed the generic equivalent which is produced by Bertek (White/Lavender capsules). Those worked excellently. and, as far as test results show, identically.

Then, I had to switch pharmacies and they, also, dispensed the Bertek version.

Lately, the same pharmacy uses the Bertek product and at other times dispenses capsules produced by Taro (orange).

My former physician once made the comment that he’d never seen anyone with more consistent phenytoin levels than those indicated on my labs.

Lately (using the Taro branded capsules) my new doctor was mildly concerned that my tests indicated elevated phenytoin levels.

Are the Bertek and Taro products REALLY identical ? Have you had questions re: this matter before?

I have been taking Levetiracetam ER 2000mg at bedtime by Sun PHARMA, without any problems, my pharmacy filled my RX from another company since they were out of stock, needless to say I had a seizure. Now my daughter is on the same medication 1500 mg. I have just been informed by cvs they will no longer be able to get my medication from sun PHARMA anymore. I am quite concerned and do not know what to do. Do different pharmaceutical company’s meds have different ingredients in them? Any information would be helpful.

So sorry to hear you had a seizure after taking a generic drug. This is totally unacceptable. It should be a crime for people to manufacture generic drugs for epilepsy that would result in an inferior product leading to someone having a seizure. Why is this practice still LEGAL? Write your congressman or woman and demand the US put a stop to generic epilepsy drugs….

I had been on brand-name Plavix since 1999. In June 2013, I was switched to the generic Clopidogrel, manufactured by Aurobindo in India. I am no longer feeling normal in my stomach. Burp, burp, burp. Regurg occasionally. Throwing up. And food doesn’t taste good (lobster? prime rib?). My stomach distress became slowly worse over a six month period. By Thanksgiving I could not eat more than a couple of bites of food at a time, and I had lost 8 lbs.

At my December 2013 blood test, I watched the blood go into the tubes and it was thicker than it has been for the last 14 years. Also, no bruise leftover at the puncture site. In fact, no bruises anywhere on me at all which is not what I grew to accept as “Plavix-normal”.

Also, two knife cuts in the kitchen during holiday food-prep produced no bleeding at all. By January, I suspected the Clopidogrel was only not working as a blood-thinner, but was poisoning my gastro tract.

In January 2014, I requested my Doctor write a DAW for the brand name, which I had to pay for entirely ($220/30 days). Within one day of stopping the generic, my stomach started feeling a tiny bit better. Over the next 6 months, I slowly returned to normal. I have had problems in the past with other generics not working at all, but I never before had one make me physically ill. I complained to my pharmacy, but they deny receiving any similar feedback. My doctor recorded that I need the brand name going forward. However, I think I am not alone in wishing to be grandfathered on long-use brand name products, especially considering the other complaints I am seeing. And the FDA should know about this!

PMS Oxycodone 80mg (Pharmascience- generic)
My usual monthly refill from Apotex OcycodoneCR80 mg, unfortunatly could not be filled, the first week of January 2015, as my pharmacy is out of stock, as well as Apotex warehouse. So, I had to be substituted with the Pharmascience Oxycodone 80 mg. I have to ask if this generic actually has Oxycodone in the ingredients?
This is the absolute worst generic I have ever taken! My dosage is( 2) – 80 mg every 6 hours. I have taken this substitute now for 8 days, I am in terrible pain. I am experiencing pain I have never felt before. Today I took 4 in a 4 hour span.
This has to be a joke, I am still suffering in pain at that dosage. This is ridiculous!
I would love to be able to test this product on how much pain relief oxycodone levels there actually are, I would think barely detectable.
A patients daily quality of life depends on this medication. My days since the substitute have been cut in half, as I cannot do what I usually am able to do with taking the Apotex. My day is now ending at 3:00 pm having to lay down, to help my pain. Very frustrating! Now waiting patiently until my pharmacy does receive out of stock generics, again another question is why is this happening? out of stocks- should not be acceptable- whose fault is this ? I had to write in as to state there are differences between generics, my experience so far is a huge one!
Not happy with my substitute!

There are definitely differences between the products Generic producers sell.
I have had to use two 40 mg capsules of Omeprazole for 25 years. I tried many different generic producers product but experienced side effects (diarrhea) on all but the Mylan Labs or Prilosec.
Now that I have reached Medicare age and obtained a Drug plan. My original plan used Walmart pharmacy which when I signed up, used only Mylan for their product. Some months ago they went to others, probably for their cost. I have to special order the Mylan product since I am being provided product from other producers.
What a pain!

I began taking (Par Pharm) Bupropion 300 xl A102

My blood pressure has skyrocketed to the danger levels had to stop a medication that was doing me so good. I am very frustrated and mad.
My insurance will not cover Brand name Wellbutrin 300 XL.

Help?

Omprazole 20 mg generic version, pill has a creamy colour and it says OME 20……..won’t work as the original for me, I tried it and I can guarantee that.

I have been switched to Percocet from hydrocodone. My Percocet came generic from Actavis and it does not work at all for my pain….the reason I had to stop the hydrocodone! I paid a lot of money for this generic med that gives no pain relief but does give stomach cramps, nausea, headaches, increased anxiety and constipation I have never experienced the likes of before! I called Actavis and, besides my name, address, and state I live in, they didn’t care what I had to say! These inferior generic meds have to stop making their way to our pharmacies …..not just narcotics but all of them, and quit sending us on a road to hell with no end in sight! I have to deal with this for at least 3 more weeks and then what? Try another generic that might work? I am seriously thinking about giving up taking any meds and just try to live. I won’t be able to do anything but I can’t stand this pain and misery anymore either! Aren’t chronic pain patients worthy of a life???

Your comment I believe is felt by many chronic pain patients across the country!
There is a huge difference between generics, and huge difference between brand name and generic!
C’mon, Pharmaceutical companies, this is a no brainer!

I was taking Singular 10MG for my allergies and it worked really well, then I was switched to the generic Claritin which ironically I found that I’m allergic too. After that I was switched to Montelukast 10Mg ML 1 and it didn’t affect me whatsoever, then I was switched most recently to another Montelukast 10mg 54 157 and it doesn’t work that well. Also I was taking Nexium 40mg and it worked great, then they switched me to the generic Omeprazole 40MG and it didn’t work that often, then very recently I was switched to Pantoprazole 40mg. Though, I haven’t had it very long to see how it affects me yet.

I’ve been taking Phentoyin Sodium (generic Dilantin) to control a seizure condition for over a decade with no problems. The last time I filled my prescription at Walgreens l was informed that they had switched generics (pretty obvious since the new pills are orange).
Besides the pills tasting like crap, I have had several petit mal seizures. They are minor, but can happen several times a day. Fortunately I’m just about ready for a refill. I will be going into Walgreens tomorrow and demanding that they fill my prescription with name brand Dilantin, but only charge me for the generic. Failure to do so will result in a lawsuit.

I’ve been taking Phentoyin Sodium (generic Dilantin) to control a seizure condition for over a decade with no problems. The last time I filled my prescription at Walgreens l was informed that they had switched generics (pretty obvious since the new pills are orange). Besides the pills tasting like crap, I have had several petit mal seizures. They are minor, but can happen several times a day. Fortunately I’m just about ready for a refill. I will be going into Walgreens tomorrow and demanding that they fill my prescription with name brand Dilantin, but only charge me for the generic. Failure to do so will result in a lawsuit.

I have been taking synthroid for 20 years. My doctor has always had me on the brand name until my script was renewed and they forgot to check the do not substitute box. I didn’t think anything of it and started on the levothyroxine and about 5 days in I started get heart palpitations. I called my doctor and told him what was happening and he called in a new script to my mail order pharmacy and a supply to my local pharmacy so I could go back to the synthroid right away.
About two weeks after switching back to the non-generic the palpitations stopped. I didn’t think much about it until about 3 years ago when my doctor started me on a statin. The script was filled with the generic version, again about four days in I started getting palpitations, only this time they were severe. My doctor took me off the statin and referred me to a cardiologist for the palpitations. About two weeks off the generic statin the palpitations eased up, however it took about three months for them to stop completely.
I have had every heart test under the sun and everything has come back normal. About two weeks ago I was having bad chest pains and went to the er, they did all of the test, nothing, other than my blood pressure was very elevated. I followed up with the cardiologist and was put on Atenolol. Again, didn’t think anything of it until about four days into taking it. The heart palpitations have started up again. My PCP has called in the non-generic version of Atenolol and wants me to follow up with the cardiologist. She is not convinced that it is the generics causing the palpitations but since they seem to go away when I stop them, I think they are the cause.

Hi

My drug plan just switched to mandatory generic, but I was already taking a generic for percocet, oxycocet. I was told by pharmacy no longer stocking this brand. I had tied taking endocet before and found it ineffective. I was give sandoz brand 325:5 but I asked for only one week. I found myself nauseated and dizzy after each dose. I mixed tablets and asked by husband to give them as a blind test. Each time I took the sandoz I became nauseated and dizzy. ALL GENERICS ARE NOT THE SAME!!
When I looked up on web I was told the dose could vary from 7- 12% as opposed to 10% composition purity in percocet. their answer increase the dosage!! I have a deteriorating disc and this has been my treatment for 10 years with effectiveness and no need to ever increase. And now I am to increase because there is a flaw in the generic drug!!! I will be fighting the insistence for generic drugs and quite honestly my experience makes me want to insist on NO more generic drugs.

Bupropion XR 150, Mylan brand
(Generic Wellbutrin XR)
Since going off of the name brand Wellbutrin XR tablets, I noticed immediately that I was feeling sluggish and unmotivated during the day. It was definitely not doing what it was supposed to do. I have not since switched back to the name brand, because my insurance company will not cover it now that it has gone generic. I’m really hoping someone is going to start looking at the efficacy of these generic drugs because I can’t effectively treat my illness with constant inconsistency in my medications.

Generic wellbutrin gave me terrible stiff neck and episodic throat spasms…scary…..no more.

Quetiapine, Pharma Science (Pms) brand 100mg tabs
(generic seroquel)
Bipolar disorder
I have used quetiapine in various forms for years, including the name brand medications and several forms of generic brands. I have never had an issue with efficacy before my recent switch to the PMS, or Pharma Science brand, generic tablets.
The results of quetiapine have always been predictable, right down to how much I had eaten that day and how tired I was feeling in general. Usually about an hour after taking the tablet, my nose would suddenly get stuffy, and shortly after I would begin to feel sleepy and know that it was time for bed.
Since starting the Pms brand, the effects have been unpredictable and frightening. I could go for days with it seemingly doing nothing – no stuffy nose, mild sleepiness and generally didn’t seem to be working, with mood easily irritated. Then, out of the blue, a tablet would make me feel as though I had been knocked over, very low blood pressure and weak heart, generally feeling horrible and barely make it to bed. I have stopped taking it and I’m returning it to the pharmacy today to exchange it with Novo brand, which has never failed to work consistently.

PMS has to be the worst generics out there!
Every generic they make is being talked about as ineffective- thought I was the only one.
Cannot this company be investigated? when patients are willing to make valid claims about their medications. We don’t want money we just want to be able to live a daily normal life with our conditions.

Unfortunately as a customer pharmacies do not allow exchanges, ever.
New prescription is needed.

I have been taking generic omeprazole for years for acid reflux. It has worked well for me. Then I got on a new insurance plan and was forced to buy through Xpress Scripts mail order for all my standing prescriptions. A the 2nd day of the new generic, I started to feel a little acidic. By day 5, I could feel the burning in the back of my throat even while standing.
Now, I actually have mini regurgitation events by the end of the day that are so acidic they burn like mad – and I am back to having the mid-chest and back pains that make me feel like I have an arrow through my mid-section.
I guess I will go buy over the counter brand name pills at a substantially higher cost and take 2 to get to my prescribed strength as I have no other choice with my prescription coverage.
I am extremely disappointed in the FDA for not stepping in to ensure mail order prescriptions are what they say they are. I am obviously getting a placebo worth nothing to me whatsoever. I am angry and not really in a position to afford this.
I am in double jeopardy as I also have to get my gabapentin through this mail order place. I use it to control chronic sciatica from an accident I was in 30 years ago. I can already feel the bottom of my foot start to ache. The only problem is, there is no over the counter solution for this. I am basically just screwed.

Amlopidipine-Benazapril 5-10 generic for Lotrel made by Watson labs and purchased at Costco pharmacy is totally ineffective. My husbands BP went up to untreated numbers on this drug. I did report this to the FDA already and to the pharmacy.

I have tried both Paxil CR 12.5 mg and Prozac in their generic forms at different times. Neither one of them worked for me but as soon as I switched back to the name brand I was feeling better. Both times I didn’t even know they had switched my pills to generic I thought they were just made from a different manufacturer until I started to not feel as well so I checked into it and found out they were both generics. I wish we could buy the Name Brand for cheaper than it is.
Jill N.

I have been on Wellbutrin XL 300 mg for quite a few years now. I never knew there was a correlation between my mood swings & the unease I felt when switched from the Wellbutrin to Watson Bupropion. Its like I am not even taking them. Also I have noticed that the pill does not dissolve. I find the pills, same size & shape in my bowel movements, I notice this because I also have very loose stools. I do not know if this is another result of the Watson generic or not. I doubt my Doctor will believe me about this. Because I am an older female (60 years old) he has started thinking I am either making medical problems up or just spending my money to see him tell me nothing is wrong. What should I do and how can I make him believe me?

I agree with you. I have been on oxycodone 10mg for almost two years and it has worked really well. I have been able to get my life back. I got my medicine this month and it was from zydus it is terrible. It does not work and it has made me sick to my stomach and I have this weird salt like taste in my mouth that I can’t get rid of.
I called the pharmacy and they talked to me like I was stupid. I am already having a problem finding a pharmacy to fill my meds anyway cause my doctor is out of town and now this. I don’t know what to do and think this is so wrong. Since when did we give the government power to tell us where we can go to the doctor at and what brand of medication we get just because it is a narcotic.

Topomax – zydus topiramate
I was taking a generic from another company (I don’t know which one.) I was recently switched to the zydus generic. It was like I had been anesthetized. I could not sit down for more than 10 minutes without falling asleep – and not for a few minutes – for an hour or more. My entire body felt numb. I could have probably slept for 18 hours a day if I would have let myself. I quit taking the drug and I was fine.

This may be too late but I changed from Fosamax to Boniva because my physician felt that I had been on Fos. longer than I should. Everything was fine and I loved it because it was once monthly. Then along came the insurance company and my employer. In order to reduce cost I went to the generic Ibandronate (monthly) It seems to work. Just something to discuss with your doctor.

That was NOT the end of it. My pharmacy went back to dispensing Warner metoprolol, despite my protests. After a couple of months on Warner, I was experiencing an irregular heartbeat all the time. I did a search of other pharmacies in the area, and found that CVS was dispensing PAR. So I’m getting my metoprolol there, and hope they don’t decide to switch, too. I don’t want to have to pay the “out of pocket” price for Toprol.

Have had anxiety issues since starting to take Zydus generic oyxcodone (10mg), been on pain meds for about 2 years now due to back pain and 2 operations to fix, never had this issue before, believe it could be possibly in the fillers that they use. Has anyone else found this to be true?

metoprolol succinate–I only do well on toprol XL and battling my insurance company for approval–haven’t gotten it so far even though the DR has called and said I get break through A FIB on the generic (my heart rate gets too high). They say the drug is identical–well my symptoms on it aren’t identical. Wake up people. We aren’t making these symptoms up.
Also I don’t do well on Omeprozole–I just pay more now and get prilosec over the counter. reflux came right back with omerprozole.
I hate being at the mercy of insurance companies who determine if we can get relief or not. I sure can’t afford Toprol XL on my own.

My doctor got the insurance to approve the brand name Zyprexa for the reminder of the year. I can tell the difference already and it has been only about 10 days.

I have the same problem with generic Wellbutrin and I think it’s terrible that so many people have to go through this. We go to the doctor because we’re suffering and need help, but then we’re put on this roller coaster. We’re told generic is the same as the brand name but it’s NOT. So we continue to suffer and think we’re going crazy and we have to go back and forth with our doctors trying to get what we really need. It’s not right that they keep doing this. I know that the generic brand doesn’t work for me because I’ve tried it several times (a waste of a lot of time and money!), so I pay for the brand name even though it’s a lot more expensive.
Last time I went to the doctor, he wrote DAW on the RX and sent it to Express Scripts and Express Scripts sent me generic anyway. When I called Express Scripts they said they called my doctor for permission to give me generic and he gave them the okay. All without checking with me. I might as well be taking nothing because that’s the effect that the generic brand has on me. I feel terrible for people that don’t know this and go to the doctor for help. People have been suffering with this for years now yet they aren’t doing anything about it. When is it going to stop? It’s not right! :(

Zyprexa
All last month I wasn’t feeling like myself. I had trouble getting to sleep and staying asleep.
When I was on the brand name of Zyprexa, I didn’t have these sleeping problems. That really was my first clue.
Then when I looked back, I realized that my medication wasn’t working as usual. Daily I take 30mg Lexapro and 2.5mg of Zyprexa. I zeroed in on the Zyprexa due to the unusal sleeping problems.
I finally call my primary care physician and asked that he order the brand name. I start taking it tonite.
I will let you know if I can tell the difference.
Gale G.

BEWARE OF COSTCO GENERIC CLONEZEPAM!!! I switched from a genereic clonezepam from Safeway to a generic from Costso, Activis “logo mark” 34. The Costco generic did not work, I took two mg and after two hours was wide awake. 2 mg of the Safeway generic taken at 10 or 10:30 pm kept me asleep till I had to go to the bathroom around 4am and then fell back asleep until 6pm.

Bupropion XL 300
I took the brand years ago and did very well. Stopped and then had to go back on but it. Except now I had to take generic and it did not work the same as it did before. My doctor suggested brand. It made a HUGE difference. It’s like taking a clean drug vs a contaminated drug. Side effects are terrible with generic and I still felt the depression. Then my insurance changed and I had to go back to generic. Depression returned and I had no doubt now how bad the generic was because I had just gone back and forth from generic to brand and back to generic.
I have read so much about the controversy over the generic from way back in 2008 and it is now 2013. Why is the generic still being distributed?
I also had a terrible time with generic Climara patch (estrodial patch). I switched back and forth on this so I know there is a huge difference here to.

I posted a comment about generic Lamictal 1 minute ago, and forgot to mark box to be notified by email when follow-up comments are posted. please post to me thanks, Michelle W

my pharmacy gave me a different generic Lamcictal, lamotrigine,- light blue/round/TARO/LMT 200 instead of my usual generic lamotrigine white/round/J 248 which caused immediate adverse effects of sleeplessness, nightmares, anxiety, build up of saliva where I woke up breathless and quickly needed to spit mouthful of drool in wastebasket. What are the pharmaceuticals using these days? It’s like toxic street drugs. Please help with the generic fillers I don’t need careless drug companies wiping out my delicate balance of stability. thanks for listening.

I have been on Bupropion 150mg XL for years with great results. Last refill my RX gave me a different Wellbutrin generic mfg by Mylan. I noticed a difference in pill size /color but like most people assumed all generics were exactly the same as original Wellbutrin. Looking back I noticed within a week of switch a loss of interest in people things and activities. By week 3 I was severely depressed with suicidal thoughts. Could barely get out of bed and face the world each day even though everything in my life is better than ever. Finally realized the only change was the Mylan generic.
Called pharmacy in tears and asked a) why they changed with no mention to me and b) can I get the Bupropion ASAP. I was told because the 300 mg XL was recalled, they were no longer going to carry the 150mg XL of BUPROPION. got a 1month supply but don’t know what I’ll do when that runs out. :/

I’ve been on Effexor then Venlafaxine 37.5mg for depression for 8 years now. From the very start it alleviated my symptoms of excessive sleepiness (lack of motivation), irritability and overstimulation in social situations. Due to the success of this medication I have been wary of any suggestion to switch to generics since the beginning, but my pharmacist encouraged me to try the Teva brand around 2009/2010 & it has been a smooth transition for me. In the spring of 2012 I ran out of my meds on vacation & my symptoms of depression (listed above) returned along with withdrawal side effects of dizziness, loss of appetite, and disorientation. The out-of-town pharmacist filled my Rx with the Zydus generic brand of Venlafaxine which eliminated all my withdrawal side effects but didn’t reduce any of my symptoms of depression. I was worried that I had reached a point in my life requiring me to up my dose, but then I realized the difference in manufacturers on the bottle. Upon returning home my regular pharmacist refilled my Rx with Teva and all my symptoms disappeared.
As if I needed to retest this situation, earlier this month the Teva brand was on back order so I agreed to try the Zydus brand again (no lapse in any meds this time). After 3 days on Zydus I never experienced withdrawal side effects, but all of my depression symptoms came rushing back. I just returned from my pharmacist who reassured me that the Teva brand will be in stock tomorrow.
I WON’T be ‘experimenting’ with Zydus Venlafaxine again!

If anyone is reading this thread… The Sandoz generic for Wellbutrin/Bupropion SR is no longer what it used to be.
I’d been stably medicated on it for several years, and then at the beginning of 2012 found that my symptoms worsened… thought the drug was just no longer working for me, until I had the bright idea to try the brand name again.
A month after starting on the brand name drug, I’m having the response that I used to have from the Sandoz generic. Way more energy, less mental fuzziness…
How do I know it’s not just me? Someone else I know is also on it… and started having the same problems at the beginning of the year!
Meanwhile this took a huge toll on my academic and job performance this year, and I’m dead broke as a consequence. I don’t think I’m going to go off the brand name drug again.

I took generic topiramate made by Torrent for migraine prevention for 3 months. After the first several weeks side effects – tingling of my hands and face, thirst, mild depersonalization – had gone away and migraines were gone. Pharmacy switched me to Sun Pharmaceuticals’ topiramate and within 2 days I felt suicidal. And had breakthrough migraines to boot. I cannot compare brand name Topamax to Torrent’s or Sun’s topiramate, but I do know that Sun’s drug was bad.

I recently filled a prescription for the new generic Zyprexa (olanzapine) made by Apotex (owned by TEVA), and it does not work at all.
I took name brand Zyprexa for years, and this new generic is simply not up to snuff. I took 20 mg and did not sleep a wink. We called the pharmacy and doctor, to no avail. They are acting like I am crazy to even question the medicine.
My medicare plan only covers generic olanzapine, and the name brand is $1300 per month, which is prohibitively expensive for me. Lilly cares, a service which provides free medicine to those who cannot afford it, won’t help if you have Medicare, leaving ordering online my only viable option. In the meantime, I’ll probably have to switch back to Haldol.

My mother has had to use Prilosec for years. It works well for her, but recently we’ve had some financial issues and I bought her the generic omeprazole instead, as I’ve never had problems with generics before. I looked at the ingredients before buying, and noticed all the inactive ingredients were different (even the active ingredient appears to be slightly different), but figured it wouldn’t hurt to try it. That was the wrong attitude to take.
My mother has been vomiting every night since she’s started taking this, thanks to her stomach acid not being controlled. I will be returning the generic omeprazole tomorrow and spending the extra money on Prilosec. My faith in generic brands has been shaken!

More on metoprolol: my pharmacy has generally dispensed the generic from Par Pharmaceuticals, but last month they apparently ran out and substituted one from Warner. Within a few days, I began noticing occasional flare-ups of my arrhythmia. At first I didn’t make the connection… just thought my arrhythmia was taking a turn for the worse. But as soon as I got a new prescription (Par again), everything settled down. I reported this to the pharmacist, who stated that “they weren’t carrying Warner any more”. I hope that’s the end of it, but I’ll be sure to check the pills with every renewal.

FWIW, I’ve had different experiences of different generics of Wellbutrin. My sister and I do not find Watson Buproprion 300xl effective at all, but Mylan works for me and another manufacturer works for her. Since there are so many different manufacturers it might be worthwhile trying to find one that will work rather than just going with the brand-name.

Mrm, 16,000 dollars a year is well within possibility when you’re paying for brand name Zyprexa out of pocket. A single 20 mg pill once a day is 1250/month at Costco. I don’t know how KCM could get it cheaper without better coverage. That’s why this whole thing is so messed up. Who can afford that??

Ask your doctor to specify name brand – he/she has to write it explicitly. At least in Colorado, the Rx must be filled. It may cost more, but not 16k year.

My son was on generic zyprexa for 3 months for schizophrenia, he regressed. Improved again since back on the brand name but I have to pay for it myself at $16,000/year because my insurance denied coverage because the “generic” is available. So much for paying an extra premium for the policy with “brand name drug coverage.”

I was prescribed synthroid by my regular doctor and received the generic brand. However, when I went to the VA to renew my prescription there, although the synthroid looked liked the generic, it didn’t act like the generic prescribed by my VA doctor. It took me about 2 months to figure it out with the help of my doctor because I “just wasn’t feeling the same”. Now, I only take generic meds. The VA distributes many medications with the same name as generic medications, but I think that there should be an investigation into the legitimacy of the drugs they prescribe.

My son had a serious allergic reaction to a Bactrim generic medication. The serious reaction to a normally healthy high school athlete landed him an overnight stay in a hospital and multiple doctor visits and tests costing me $3,000 in out-of-pocket costs— not to mention about 5 years off my life. The prescribing physician was concerned he had developed Stevens-Johnsons syndrome which is a life threatening disorder…. left untreated.
Here is my issue—after contacting the legal representative of the generic drug manufacturer, Watson Labs— here is part of his response.
“Also, because you raised the issue of consulting an attorney, I feel obliged to inform you that, in our opinion, the recent Supreme Court decision of PLIVA, Inc. v. Mensing, 131 S. Ct. 2567 (2011) (“Mensing”), reh’g denied, 2011 WL 3557247 (U.S. Aug. 15, 2011) is controlling and bars the type of lawsuit you are threatening in connection with a generic pharmaceutical medicine. The Supreme Court held in Mensing that the federal regulation of generic medicines preempts state law tort claims such as those you may seek to bring in connection with your recent email to me regarding your son. However, you are certainly free to consult an attorney if you feel that is in your interest. “
Every single person in America that is taking a generic form of a prescribed medication is now unable to seek any recourse as the result of an injury.
I hope you would see this as a free pass for every generic pharmaceutical company and could put a substantial amount of lives in danger and families financially ruined with no recourse. If Toyota got a pass on product liability, no matter how good a car they build, I wouldn’t buy one.
Shouldn’t the public be aware of this? I hope you would take some time to look at this.

The generic version of Lamictal has caused problems for me, I was switched to the generic form, without my knowledge, and plunged into a four-month long depression.
I understand it doesn’t work for some other people too.
The medication works when it was, under medical supervision, increased from 200 to 400. This was tried instead of immediately switching back to the brand name due to finances. The high dose does concern me since I am taking two other anti-depressants – Cymbalta and the generic form of wellbutrin. Cymbalta does not come as a generic. I also take Topamax for migraines and the mood stabilizer effect in that also helps. Again the generic form does not work as well but can’t afford $8 a tablet.
I had to switch to much less beneficial health plan nine months ago when COBRA ran out. I always used brand names under the old plan.
I need to find lower cost drugs due to finances and since my new insurance will not cover brand names – even if generics do not exist. In order for them to pay for the meds you must switch to generics even if they don’t work as well. In other words I need to switch from Cymbalta to generic Efflexor – which doesn’t work for me, I had tried just about every anti-depressant before hitting on Cymbalta.
I’ve dealt with severe depression all my life, it’s not easy as you know but you just do it. The combo of drugs I’m on now and the diagnosis and treatment based on bi-polar 2 has been a miracle. Prozac had helped somewhat for years but not anywhere to the degree this has.
There has to be a better way for people to obtain what they need. Honesty about generic versions in many cases not working as well and lowering one’s quality of life needs to be publicized.

Hi in the last 5,6 months my psychiatrists have told me there tablets have changed to a different name called clopine which is a generic of clozipine (clozaril) in the process in changing back to the original clozipine. I just wanted everyone to know that not only did the generic make me really sick but everyone else believed that they are the same drug.
Especially when it comes to mental medication we meaning us patients should receive the best medications and shouldn’t be cut short because it is cheaper. If u are wondering why your anti-psychotic isn’t working or u have felt that something has changed well most probably you’re right. This is the story of the situation I was dealing with. I hope it doesn’t happen to others but I expect many others will go through the same problem.

I used Wellbutrin XL 300 for about 2 years. When generic came on the market my pharmacy ‘automatically’ changed me to it. Within about 2 weeks I started to slide backwards. I had no idea why. When I went to my DR., I brought the script. Of course the DR knew it was the generic immediately. She switched me back to the brand name drug and I was fine within about 2 weeks. A huge problem with Budeprion XL 300, is not only does it not work, but it takes weeks to get back to a normal steady state.

did you lose weight on the actavis generic of wellbutrin? I have been on the Sandoz and watson generics. I lost weight on the Sandoz generic.

There are 2 types of generic methdone, 10 mg tablets, used in treatment with pain management. The one I received was numbered, 57/71M, no problems with this medication, in fact, it has longer effectiveness in relieving pain than some other pain medications. The other type of methadone is 54/142, is a round tablet. I experienced migraines and nausea with round ones.
I saw my doctor, two weeks into my therapy, after receiving the round methadone tablets, explained that this particular generic was making me ill, the remaining medication was disposed of, in front on me, and I was prescribed same medication, with a note, not to substitute,’patient cannot tolerate 54/142, do not give’! After this bad experience, I must ask which tablet I will be given, prior to having prescription filled.
It is difficult to become established at one pharmacy, when a pharmacy opts to order a generic that can cause adverse reactions, for this reason, I am aware now, of the need to inquire about which generic medication is on hand, before filling prescription. I had two bad experiences, two months in a row, am much more aware of the differences with generic medications, Thank You!

The generic drug, made by Amneal Pharmaceuticals, called, IP204, is generic form of Percoset. It caused burning migraines, nausea, and pain relief did not last beyond 2 hours.

Pantoprazole 40 mg
I had been getting generic Pantoprazole 40 mg from Walgreens for several months and it was helping in the control of GERD symptoms. As it seemed I was doing well on the drug, my doctor wrote a prescription that I could submit to the mail order pharmacy that is part of my health care plan. Within 3 weeks of taking the generic provided by the mail order pharmacy I was right back where I started before taking medication.
All my problems returned – stinging in the stomach, choking sensation, burning, bad taste in my mouth. I soon realized that these problems returned after I began taking the generic provided by the mail order pharmacy. The mail order generic was from Mylan while the generic I obtained from Walgreens was from Teva.
I went back to Walgreens and paid out of my own pocket for the Teva generic of Pantoprazole and am starting to feel better. This is not the first time I have had a problem with a generic. There’s not only a difference between name brand drugs and generics but even between generics from different sources.

My son has been taking wellbutrin from Teva for a couple of months. We reached the highest level of stability we’d had in more than 3 years with this brand. When the pharmacy switched him to Sandoz, he started spiraling out of control. The doctor assured me it should not make a difference, but it is the only thing that has changed in his life.
We called the pharmacist yesterday and she told us we’re not the only ones who have had this complaint since her store received the Sandoz brand generic. She tried to order the Teva and said she will call today if they get it in. Within days we noticed the difference and he is now almost as unstable as he was over a year ago when we had to make some major changes for him. I will search pharmacies for the Teva if we can’t get it from our usual place.
I will try to update once we switch back to the Teva with how he has reacted.

Wellbutrin XL vs Budeprion XL
AND
Synthroid vs Levothyroxine
I just recently was given generic synthroid after being on Levoxyl and I ABSOLUTELY noticed a difference!! After taking the generic for about 2 weeks I noticed the days that I took it were the days I felt horrible. (I only take 1/2 a 25 mcg tablet every other day) I could tell my heart was beating faster… my pulse would go from 60 to 84 shortly after dosage and for many hours afterwards, and I felt jittery and anxious. I had terrible headaches and felt nauseous and was dead tired all the time. I went online to see if these were normal side effects and that prompted me to look at my RX bottle – I didn’t even know I had been given a generic!!!
I also read that if I was experiencing any of those symptoms to “seek medical attention”. I called my pharmacy first (since it was Saturday) to see if I could get the name brand without jumping through hoops. They said I could switch without a new RX. Well… when I went to pick it up I found out TRICARE would not cover the name brand!! even if my Dr said “name brand only”. I was about to cry and then the pharmacist said “you don’t want to pay the $24?” I became joyful and happily paid the $24 and left. as you all know… some brand names are hundreds more $$ than generic!!!!!
I am scared to death I won’t be so lucky when I need to refill my Wellbutrin XL. I found this website because I wanted to see if there were still complaints about Wellbutrin XL vs Budeprion XL. Years ago I was given Budeprion XL (teva) instead of the name brand I had been on for 2 years and I started noticing I felt very tired, moody and quick-to-cry ALL the time and it seemed my irritability (emotionally going from 0 to 10 in one second) was back. My husband even started questioning if I was even taking it… I went online to see if anyone else was experiencing the same side effects and I discovered there were many, many people who felt their depression symptoms had returned while they were on the generic.
Ever since I have had my DR write “name brand only” on my prescriptions. The pharmacist said that did not matter with the synthroid… For years I have been paying about $25 per month… now I may have to pay $297 per month or go back to generic….
I just wanted you to know I am one more person that has had problems with these two GENERIC medications!!!

2″‘ am on opiod therapy and have been experimenting with other medications due to my cervical spinal stenosis (diagnosed 2/2011), ruptured S1 disk (diagnosed 10/2011) and fibromyalgia (diagnosed 10/2010). With the numerous meds that my primary care physician then my spine and pain doctors prescribed, the costs of prescriptions was exorbitant without receiving generics.
I am on a combination of fentynal and oxycodone. However, over the course of the past year or so, I thought I was losing my mind. It took a while to figure out that the generics being provided were from different companies. I swore the strengths were different. So, I asked my pain doctor to mark that name brand is medically necessary, so began to pay much more… pushing my monthly out of pocket costs to about $300/month.
I began researching the topic and found your site and some opinions on good manufacturers for the fentynal and oxycodone, so now I am calling my pharmacist who orders from the manufacturers that I select. So far, so good. But it truly irritates me to hear from drug companies, doctors or even the FDA that generics are as potent as name brand… unless they suffer from chronic pain or the myriad of conditions that force us to take meds.
When you speak of highly controlled substances for pain, to get a script filled with ineffective generics causes the patient to suffer with uncontrolled pain then hope that the generics that the pharmacy has that month is better than the current generics. I am glad your site gives recognition to the dilemma, but frustrated that so few speak up to recognize the problem.

I thought it was just me!!!…Generic Wellbutrin acts differently than the brand drug. There should be warnings about the use of these generics. Now that I know its not just me I am going to contact my doctor to return to Wellbutrin brand. It’s just not worth saving the money if the drug is not as effective.

you were probably switched to a generic that does not work. I changed pharmacies to get a different generic. I knew it since I took the first dose but have thought I was having a breakdown or something. No all generics are not the same and I believe this is very sad.

I recently started taking the generic form of Wellbutrin made by Watson. It is the generic form for Wellbutrin SR 150 mg. It has been a month and I do not believe it is working for me. I previously took another generic form that worked just fine made by Mylan.

I have been on Wellbutrin SR/ Buproprion SR for the last 12 years. Brand name worked best but after insurance would no longer cover it, I was switched to generic with reasonable success until my last prescription. It was the first time I had the Teva generic; before that I had always had Watson or Actavis.
The Teva was awful; there was a terrible spike in the release about 2 hours after I took the first dose causing dizziness and nausea followed by a crash (still nauseated) at the 5 hour mark which then resulted in me needing to sleep for 2 hours. I thought I was crazy–generics should be the same, right? Cursory research on the internet told me I was not alone.
Merck Medco, my mail order pharmacy and THE WORST medication provider I have yet endured, will not take back the $255 worth of medications that I cannot take (if I don’t pay for them it is considered a breach of my insurance contract and gives them grounds to deny future claims), will not pay anything at all toward brand name or order in a generic brand I can take. I have to drive an hour each way to a pharmacy that will order the Watson generic and I have to pay for it all out of my own pocket!
I am so glad I have insurance; whatever would I do without it?

Interesting account of your experience. Do you think your doc listened to you and responded as he did b/c of your profession? Just curious!

MKC in CA…I AM NOT AN MD or DO, but have worked w psychiatry and my own depression. Long story short, IMHO, the drugs labeled for depression and used most commonly today mainly address serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine only to slight degree. Antidepressants in past were based on monoamine hypothesis which addresses all three. The MAO inhibitors of past have serious food and drug interactions, so not used much.
There is new version of selegeline available now in a patch called EMSAM. supposedly better side effect profile and safer. It is a selective MAOI. I personally did not respond to any SSRIs or SNRIs and I tried about ten over 15 + yrs. My psychiatrist finally put me on Vyvanse, an ADHD drug which boosts dopamine. worked like a charm.
I believe that dopamine depression is overlooked, esp since SSRIs became popular in last 20 yrs. There are also a few ‘atypical antipsychotics’ that are FDA approved for treatment resistant depression. They work primarily w dopamine (there are many diff dopamines, so this is simplified!) Abilify was first, I believe. Can be very activating. If you are not seeing a psychiatrist, it might be best to do that as these meds are not good to be played around with. It’s a delicate balancing act and everyone responds differently. EX: Any bipolar history or in family could be triggered by wrong choice.
I hope my experience and ‘theory’ may be of help.
Good luck and don’t give up! There are a lot of options that many docs are not experienced with and so don’t try.
Where are you in CA?

I have been taking wellbutrin sr 150mg for a couple of years and loved it. than my pharmacy changed me to a generic watson brand no problem is still worked for me, not as well but I was ok with it. Then I got a refill and the pills are different color and the printing is different. I am having anger issues, my ocd is back and my life is in the toilet again. I hope the drug companies take notice and help us out. They don’t understand how this affects people and their lives.

I totally agree. This exact thing occurred with my daughter when she went from Brand to Generic. It is worth the extra $$ to be mentally healthy. When pharmacists say they work the same, I wonder how would they even know

* Be nice, and don't over share. View comment policy^