The People's Perspective on Medicine

Montelukast

Overview

 Singulair is used to treat asthma and allergies.

Full prescribing information is available at:

http://dailymed.nlm.nih.gov/dailymed/drugInfo.cfm?id=8034

Check out Wikipedia for more user-friendly information:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Montelukast

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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.” .
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It is criminal that these generics have no integrity and our FDA continues to certify them. Poorer persons are dying all in the interests of the profits of these sleazy companies.

Addendum: I just called the FDA at this number: 1-888-463-6332 to complain about the Teva Montelukast. They told me to fill out a form called “Medwatch Online Voluntary Reporting Form,” which I did fill out and send to them online. They said that these forms are taken seriously, which I hope is right.

I told them about all of your complaints too, and they suggested that if more of you will go to the FDA website and click on Medwatch Online Voluntary Reporting Form and then fill it out, this will be considered a more serious problem for them to address, as there will be more people complaining. I hope you all can do that. Until you have experienced it, nobody knows how terrible it is to not be able to breathe well, to feel like you are suffocating, until it happens to them. This factor alone should be considered as a life-threatening side effect!

I was almost relieved to hear all these comments about the Teva generic for Montelukast, as I have been having a lot of problems since starting it and thought I was the only one. I have also been on Singular for 15 to 20 years and it made my asthma bearable. Now I too am having frequent asthma attacks and sleepless nights. I have also learned a lot from all of you. I was shocked to find out that the generic only has to have 81% of the active ingredient in the brand name. That alone could make a big difference. In addition, the different inactive ingredients could have adverse side effects along with possibly making the active ingredient less effective. I have talked to my pharmacist and he is trying to help me find a different generic, but it looks like this Teva company is either buying all their competition or putting them out of business. I did try a generic from Apotex first and it was much better than this one. Evidently that generic is suspiciously not available any more. I think we all need to get together somehow with a major complaint to the FDA; not sure how to do it, but maybe there is a way.

I was doing well on montelukast 10 mg for about 3 weeks when I began to experience horrible joint pain in neck, back, wrist, knee and ankle all on my left side. I stopped it. Unsure how to priced now since the inhalers are equally as awful for me.

I appreciate all these postings. I too have been having trouble on a new generic after taking Singulair for 15 years and virtually forgetting I had asthma. I now am short of breath all the time and doing a lot of coughing. It finally occurred to me tonight that perhaps it was the generic I had received. I’ve been taking Teva’s version of the generic. I think I am going to explore my options.

I took Singulair and Advair and/or Symbicort and seldom had an asthma flare-up. The my insurance company switched me to generic montelukast and the problems began. With Teva brand I experience frequent stomach upsets and recurring asthma symptoms. The they switched manufactures and I began receiving Dr. Reddy brand montelukast. I began experiencing muscle and joint pain in my extremities, sore achy hands, and areas in my thighs and upper arms that were even painful to the touch. I stopped taking montelukast and the pain disappeared with days. This is a scenario that has been repeated numerous times, so I know the culprit is the generic montelukast. My insurance refuses to pay for brand name Singulair and it costs over $200 a month. Many generics are ineffective and sometimes even dangerous. I’ve filed a complaint with the FDA, for all the good that does.

Thank you Dr. David for Fda link to report ineffectiveness of generic forms of montelukast. I have submitted my complaints and request for generics to have 90-100% comparative effectiveness to brand Singulair.

I have been taking montelukast for almost 20 years to control severe allergy symptoms and prevent asthmatic episodes. Brand Singulair gave me relief year round.
Then I began the generics supplied by Kroger pharmacy when they became available, and experienced some break-through symptoms during certain pollen seasons. Each year my symptoms have appeared more often.
I have tried 4 different generic options offered by Kroger, CVS, and Publix and have not yet found a generic product as effective as the brand Singulair. I pay $600 a month for my health care insurance including pharmacy coverage (note: my cost for same health care coverage was $300 Per month until the new health care coverage “Obama Care” came into effect) and cannot get my insurance company to help with the cost of the brand Singulair.
As a result I am undergoing pulmonary tests, lung cat scans and allergy tests again to prove to the insurance provider that the generic forms are not working. The insurance provider said that I had to try other forms of medication that are less expensive before they will consider paying the higher costs for a brand name medication. When I explained my history of using many forms of generics that are not effective they said that a specialist needed to confirm my need for brand Singulair as opposed to my family MD.
I am glad more people are receiving healthcare coverage As a result of me having to pay double for my coverage, but substandard healthcare coverage for all of us is not an acceptable consequence.

I had always used Singulair until my insurance had my mail order prescription send me the generic form. I suddenly couldn’t breathe as well and contacted a very serious lung infection. The lung specialist, medical doctor, and ent all said they didn’t understand what was going on. They said they were doing everything they could, but I still had the severe cough and asthma symptoms. I then asked the mail order pharmacy to send the brand name Singulair. Within two days I felt as though the heaviness from the asthma had lifted. I’ve stayed on the brand name every since and don’t have any problems. It’s the same with Synthroid. I now take Nature Throid.

Since I was switched to the generic of Singulair, I am always breathing hard. I have heard that the generic I’m on is only 25 percent as effective as regular Singulair. Has anyone else had breathing problems on the generic form of Singulair?

I got a prescription for montelukast sodium in an attempt to gain better control over my asthma after having a negative reaction to Symbicort. Within a few days, I started having pain in my knees and lower legs, and to a lesser degree, in my fingers. It seemed like many of the tendons in my body were tightening up despite frequent stretching. I also felt like I was moving much more slowly. I walk a lot, and by the fifth day my knees hurt enough that I discontinued using it.

If enough of us report to the FDA these adverse reactions we may get some action. Report them to:
https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/medwatch/index.cfm?action=consumer.reporting1

The problems being discussed here are NOT “side effects”, minor problems that stem from or are related to the expected performance of the drug. These are “ADVERSE REACTIONS”, a category that the FDA takes seriously. They have nothing to do with the expected effect of the drug. In this case they indicate preventable faulty formulation and manufacture of the drugs and do not occur with the one Brand-Name formulation available.
I am an MD and know from professional experience that in most cases, particularly when there is more than one independent report, the FDA takes these adverse reaction reports very seriously. A colleague’s report of what I thought was a minor problem with a device brought a phone call to us from the FDA. The second such report led to recalls and shutdown of manufacturing until changes were made. My report of a problem with a drug led to a call from the drug-maker. When they asked if we needed any more reporting forms and I told them that 5 of my colleagues needed forms they became very upset. After the next 5 reports went in the FDA required re-labeling of a dangerous but essential drug which decreased the frequency of complications related to the drug.

After years of childhood asthma that disappeared when I moved to the west coast, it reappeared when I moved to Colorado. It was bad, steroids, frequent prednisone rounds, inhaled steroid treatments.. The along came Singulair. A godsend, off all of it but an occasional puff on an albuterol inhaler.

Then came the generic.

It doesn’t work. I don’t think it’s the additional ingredients in my case, I think it’s a fraud. My education is in medicinal chemistry with a lot of experience in pharmacokinetics, ie what happens to a drug I the body and includes how well it’s absorbed and how fast it’s metabolized. The FDA needs more money, so they can look into the BS that is the US pharmaceutical industry. It’s a fraud.

I agree with you my friend. I am a Medical Dr with severe asthma. I used to use my albuterol 6-10 each night. Singulair changed my life, I have since rarely needed albuterol, advir or prednisone.

Then I was forced into generics by my insurance company. I have tried 5 different generics, none work as well as Singulair. It is unfortunate that the FDA has not done its due diligence before releasing a lot generics. They have brainwashed the pharmacists to tell people that all of the generics are the same as the Brand name. Yet, the pharmacokinetics (how drugs are absorbed and distributed in the body) are not the same and may in fact be very different! The FDA says they are the same if they fall within a 25% range! I am sorry, but that is a huge range for a drugs efficacy that may cause it not to work!

We also know generics often use different binders and dyes, these all can cause a reaction very different than the brand name. I am afraid the FDA has done a real disservice to the population. We are putting people into emergency rooms in the name of “saving money”.

I am thrilled to have found these shared experiences. I too have had asthma for years but until one year ago it had not been suggested to me to take a pill form of medication….just the ventolin as needed. Finally I went to doc and was prescribed singulair but as we all know our insurance companies are trumping our choice for brand name and gave me the montelukast. I had had nothing to compare it to. For one year I have lived with intense dreams that I could write chapter books from. I have slept so hard I would need 3-4 time slots for my alarm to go off to wake me in the mornings. I am a morning person so this wasn’t working.

Recently, I have had more asthma attacks an ever before and many at night time. I realized that in the past year our pharmacy had changed “generic” suppliers twice. This last time I realized my asthma symptoms were worsening to two and three episodes a day. I can’t live that way.

So I recently asked my doc if he would prescribe the brand name and thank God he did and my insurance co. did not object but my co-pay has increased to about $25. It is worth it. Asthma attacks, especially at night while I am sleeping, is disruptive enough I can’t get a good nights sleep after it is under control.

It’s good to know others have had the same plight with generic montelukast. I feel like our choices with medicines are being more and more controlled by someone else to the point we no longer have choices. I have the same problem with Synthroid.

Thanks for everyone’s comments here. I am suffering terribly in the Teva genetics: increased rhinitis, lung mucous, stomach pains, fatigue. The Singulair brand gives me my energy back and my life. It is just amazing how generics are allowed to get by with 20% difference in potency and testing is not required as it is of brands. AND after spending over an hour on the phone trying to extract inactive ingredients from my mail order pharmacy, I’ve got to ask: is there a reporting process for stuff like this? Ironically, it seems it adds to more health issues and more costs.

In February 2013 I was switched to a generic drug (Montelukast) from Singular that I had been on for about 20 years. In April 2013 I had to go to the emergency room for asthma. It was the 1st time since I had been put on Singular that I had to go to the hospital. Since then I have been struggling with my asthma and am now frequently on prednisone. I have also had fatigue and depression since being switched. I just figured it out . I am going to pay the extra money and go back on Singular. I wish that I had realized the obvious before I had to suffer so long.

I have been taking Singulair for years. My doctor wrote the prescription as a “dispense as written” because I have always had issues with starches and talcs used in generic meds. Well, my insurance company has completely disallowed brand name Singulair, so I’ve having to take the generic Montelukast since February of this year.
My pharmacist has tried both the Teva and Apotex brands, and both give me serious indigestion with bubbles, belching, and stomach acid backing up my esophagus during the night. I have to take Zantac just to calm the indigestion so I can sleep. Can’t take it at other times because I have both asthma and allergies – bedtime is when you have to take it when that’s the case.
I did some research on the inactive ingredients – the stuff that makes up the tablet and was appalled! Singulair has 5 ingredients: microcrystalline cellulose, lactose monohydrate, croscarmellose sodium, hydroxypropyl cellulose, and magnesium stearate. The 5 generics on the market range from 10-13 inactive ingredients. Some have 3-5 of Singulair’s ingredients plus many more – some are laxatives (polyvinyl glycol, polyethylene glycol, macrogol) to help with breaking down the pill in the gut. All 5 generics contain titanium dioxide, and 4 of them contain red and yellow iron oxide (the 5th contains FD&C red and yellow dyes). My pharmacist focused on those as the most likely suspects – he sees many customers who have problems with iron oxides and with titanium dioxide.
I noticed several references in these comments to Mylan’s generic. Here are the ingredients for that one: silicon dioxide, croscarmellose sodium, fd&c blue no. 2, fd&c yellow no. 6, hypromelloses, magnesium stearate, mannitol, cellulose, microcrystalline, polydextrose, polyethylene glycols, sodium lauryl sulfate, titanium dioxide, triacetin. Notice that there is mannitol (an alcohol-based sugar) – that ingredient has been associated with gastric upset when used in sugar-free products and in no longer included in gums and candies because of problems with kids and GI upset.
I’m fighting my insurance company. So far, even though they tell me they have a process for appeals, they tell me not to bother because they’re not even going to consider it. Now I’m armed with ingredient lists and will consult my allergist about potential allergies – the titanium dioxide is a strong potential since I’ve had problems with other pills that contain that ingredient.
So, fight for the brand! Singulair doesn’t work for a ton of folks, but when it does, it’s awesome! Has really controlled my nighttime asthma and is the one med that I take that I really notice if I run out. Once I found out how much junk was in the other pills, I’m really convinced that many side effects to generic medicines are due to the inactive ingredients.
And one other note, when the generics cite side effects and research findings, they’re just reporting the clinical studies that were originally done for montelukast when it was developed as Singulair. They NEVER do additional clinicals on generics to test for side effects to the inactive ingredients – I suspect many of the problems we are all encountering are due to untested inactive ingredients used to make the pill itself.

My husband was willing to pay extra to get his prescription for Singular after trying Teva’s generic with similar miserable side effects to those warned about. Suddenly, after signing up for his Part D drug plan, the cost of the co-pay went from $45 to $98. WHAT? Under the insurance agreement, as a non-preferred medication, he has to pay 50% of the cost of the drug. The insurance company has said the cost of Singulair has gone up. The cost of Singular for someone who is not insured varies in our community from $262 at Walmart to $254 at Walgreen’s to $188 at our local pharmacy.

I’ve suffered ever since roughly end of 2012 with amazing & terrorizing nightmares. Worse, I’d typically would awaken around 4 a.m. (after taking Montelukast about 11 p.m.) with my mind racing, and incredibly “moody” thoughts. I suppose suicidal thoughts is what people are too afraid to say—not me. Day after day I contemplated suicide…and I’m doing great, all things considered.
Unfortunately, with a rotten childhood, it did seem “a good idea”, this suicide ideation. It passed once I was on my own, financially secure, married, happier, etc. Then, when my life was really improving and stable (now 61), the odd suicide ideation had returned…so subtley. Been off the Montelukast, no more ideation. Between pharmaceutical companies & insurance companies trying to make as much money as possible (thanks, Congress), I don’t see how the average person can hope to survive better. Doctors? Please, I keep getting a new one each year their contract is up—it’s Florida.

Generic singulair does not work for me and it looks like I am not alone. I once paid around $60.00 for singulair but when I checked with a couple of pharmacies they informed me that singulair now costs about $240.00+.

To DZ: We had a grandson on Singulair daily for asthma/skin problems when he was in K-5 and he started having behavioral problems that were not at all normal for him. When the Singulair was stopped, he quit misbehaving.

I recently started having problems with my marriage. I was told that they started 8 months ago. I realized that 1 month prior to the changes I started taking montelukast. I took Singulair as a child and it worked well. My insurance changed me to the generic and over the last 8 months or so, I have experienced many side effects that unfortunately I was unwilling to admit.
The side effects were suicidal thoughts (nothing attempted thank god), fatigue, depression, weird dreams, mood swings. I am not blaming the drug for my relationship issues. Some of the issues are mine and I recognize and take responsibility for them. I just wanted to share because if I didn’t have a loving wife and didn’t see the connection with the drugs I may have lost my marriage.

I have began experiencing many symptoms of asthma since switching from singular to the generic version too. My asthma was under control for a very long time while on Singular. this year and herbal pills with the new generic version of this medication.

there have been several reports on substitution from Singulair to generic, I had abnormal dreams myself when taking the generic. now back to brand. Do not know which generic montelukast this was.

I agree, generally I am not opposed to generics. I take a Teva blood pressure medication and do very well on it.
What really gets me, is the Insurers will not pay on a name brand prescription what they would pay for the generic. I have had twice the number of sinus infections which invariably turn into bronchitis since I had to leave Singulair. I got sixty Singulair tablets in Italy for 40 Euro and felt much better while on them.

SHL – Were the Singular tablets legitimate? If so, why so inexpensive? Did you have to provide a prescription from a Dr. there or would a prescription from your US Dr. work?

I had been taking Singulair for about a year when my drug plan required a switch to generic Montelukast. Unlike others here, I began taking the generic made or marketed by Teva, and not only experienced no improvement in my symptoms, but also experienced unpleasant side effects, such as nasal drainage that gave me a sore throat.
The next time I saw my allergist, he noted that my condition had worsened and said that he would have to prescribe an additional drug to control the symptoms. Because an online search confirmed that others had experienced problems with the Teva generic, I began to look for an alternative, and found Mylan. My pharmacy initially told me that it could supply only Teva, which was frustrating, but my new doctor specified Mylan generic, and to my surprise, the pharmacy then changed its tune, supplying that drug, which has worked for me.
I am happy about this, because I did not want my plan to have to pay for the more expensive brand-name drug or to pay for another drug to offset the Teva side effects. The point is that side effects and efficacy will vary from patient to patient, and a generic may be acceptable, provided that you find the one that works for you. And be sure to check the bottle prior to accepting the drug from the pharmacy each time, to ensure that the generic that has been filled is the one you want.
P.S. I was recently prescribed my doctor’s preferred drug for another condition, and was not certain that the Teva generic for that worked, either, so I did another online search for patient reviews. Patients who had taken the name brand extended-release drug and had switched to generic stated that the generic did not work nearly as well, with some patients actually reporting hospitalization due to the failure of the drug.
Because I had never taken the name brand, I really did not even know whether the drug as initially approved by the FDA would work for me, and I did not want to have the generic dosage increased unnecessarily or to switch to another drug that might have more side effects, so I asked my doctor to specify name brand only for a month’s worth of pills. My insurance company would not pay for this, so of course it was much more costly, but if it works, the doctor will justify the name brand or we will search for a better generic. As a patient, I am not opposed to generics, and even prefer them if they work, but I resent that pharmacies and drug plans seem to have struck deals with generic manufacturers that restrict the ‘brand’ of generic available to the patient, regardless of its efficacy and ultimate increased cost to both the patient and the plan.

CM – Were the Singular tablets legitimate? If so, why so inexpensive? Did you have to provide a prescription from a Dr. there or would a prescription from your US Dr. work?

Thanks, VK I will refer back to your remarks if I cannot get the Apotex. My independant pharmacist is able to buy from different suppliers which so far is allowing me to get Apotex. The large chain drug stores are not able to do this. Your experiences seem to echo mine. I am so busy at work that having to deal with this new insurance form of “socialized medicine” is truly a pain and an unnecessary source of stress. Still say that the trouble, the illnesses, and the wasted time off are not conducive to efficiency or health.

If you are given a generic form of singulair. Write down the manufacturer. There seems to be over a dozen different ones…and they are not the same.
Most pharmacies only carry one…and they frequently switch. I had three manufacturers this year. Some work fairly well…some are not good at all.
I agree with the above Apotex did seem to be one of the best. Also Aurobindo was good.
Once you find one that works….check before you refill…if they switched..look for another pharmacy. If you are doing mail order..you may need to appeal to your insurance company to have them let you fill your 90 day at a retail pharmacy because they don’t carry the generic that works for you. This is what I had to do..its a pain…but still better then wheezing all the time.
It would be cheaper for me to find a generic that works and pay for it out of pocket..than try to get Singulair..name brand. Most insurance policies have a new clause which says that if a generic is available, and the patient chooses to use name brand, the patient is responsible for the co-pay..PLUS the difference in price between the generic and the name brand. This means that last year before Singulair went generic I could get 90 days for $105. Now it will cost me $465.02!

Well, I’ve been on Montelukast Sodium Tablets 10 mg manufactured by Apotex Research Pvt. Ltd. for about 10 days and seem to be better. I still believe I was better on Singulair but am willing to try this generic for another month. So far so good.

problem with generic singulair here. Been on brand name for 6 years, switched 2 weeks ago and I can not get rid of my head ache and have extreme tiredness. Switching back to brand name as of tonight; not sure what to do with the 6 month supply of the poor quality generic stuff that I have left.

Well, it has happened again. Switched by pharmacy to Montelukast manufactured by Dr. Reddy. Horrible bout with bronchitis, days off work, shots, strong antibiotic, inhalers, etc. Really sick. Did not associate with Singulair substitute until three weeks later when I could not sit through an hour’s meeting without coughing. Have been experiencing shortness of breath since bout with bronchitis but just didn’t blame the drug until nothing else seemed to help. So, I can take the substitute made by Mylan if I can find it, but it nauseates me somewhat (like aspertame).
The Teva and Dr. Reddy generics do not work on me. So tomorrow, I start my hunt for a new generic to try. I just wonder how long it will take insurance companies to realize that these generics do not work and are costing them money, not to mention the health of their rate payers.

I’ve been on Singulair for about 10 years and NEVER had an asthma attack while using it. I have been on the generic version Montelukast for over 6 months and have experienced numerous and very serious asthma attacks, shortness of breath and unable to breathe deeply as I could when I was on Singulair.
Somehow, I made the connection that it must be the Montelukast not working for me. I requested my doctor to prescribe ONLY Singulair for me, which she did. I will never go back to the generic version again! It’s worth having to pay more out-of-pocket money for something that works and potentially saves my life.

Thank you so much. I knew I was not losing my mind. I too have been on Singulair for about 6 years. I got a refill and went down hill after 5 weeks. I could not figure out what was wrong with me until a co-worker asked about my asthma and allergy meds. She mentioned she had gotten switched from Singulair to Montelukast due to insurance. Sure enough, that is what happened to me. Unfortunately, my doctor argued with me about it being my imagination. Meanwhile, I am suffering with my breathing. This ridiculous.

@ MD, No a generic and a placebo are two different things. The generic has to be 81% similar to the original drug, in this case Singulair. Generics are made by many different companies and therefore that 19% can be different in each manufacturer. So please, if you are not getting the relief you had enjoyed previously from Singulair, tell your pharmacist and get some by another manufacturer. It worked for me. If you get no relief from any of the generics, go back to Singulair and just pay the differenct. Breathing is that important!

Hi,
I also enjoyed singulair 11 years. Even in heavy physical exertion, I felt great. Now I’ve got Montelukast Activas (manufactured by Iceland)
During yesterday’s session I noticed difficulty in breathing. Cough and weight of the lungs (the classic symptoms of asthma).
I looked on the internet and SINGULAIR is a prescription only additional fee approx. € 75. (pack of 98 tablets).
It’s the end of Singulair? Patent U.S. companies finished eighth September 2012.
The company started manufacturing Montelukast, Castispir etc.
These drugs are just as good as Singulair? Or is it a placebo?
I appreciate any comments on experience with the transition from Singulair to another drug.

IF the manufacturer has stopped making Singulair, I am not sure how that affects the generics. All I can say is I am now on my third generic and doing very well. The first one made me nauseous; the second one did not work well, but the third one is fine. There must be no standards for generics.
Go to an independent pharmacist if your big chain pharmacy cannot try you on different manufacturers. So many generic drugs now contain aspartame and I am so sensitive to it and get really ill.

I just found out from my pharmacy that the manufacturer is no longer making Singulair. She has tried to check with other pharmacies in the area and they have the same information. I have a phone call in to my physician now to see what my next steps may be.

THIS IS SAD!!!! Everyone posting is suffering because of the insurance companies have made them switch or because they just cant afford Singulair but all of the ones on welfare are still taking the real Singulair with no questions ask!!!

Like several posting here, Montelukast did not work for me. I was on Singulair for several years and for the first time was able to control my symptoms and prevent them from progressing further and requiring secondary and tertiary medications. This fall I was switched to generic Montelukast, and my symptoms reappeared effecting my eyes, breathing and lungs. 5 days back on Singulair and I am feeling well again and the symptoms are gone.

I also was on Singulair for year and it worked wonderfully to control my symptoms and allowed me to build up enough “resistance” that I went a few years not needing an inhaler. Was switched by insurance to montelukast and my symptoms came back: itchy, teary, gunky eyes, and eventually breathing issues and burning returned Back on Singulair and within 5 days I am symptomatic free again.

I have had the same experience as many people that have posted comments about Montelkuclast. The generic drug that my insurance had me try twice. Seems like every year when I have to renew my prescriptions I have to go through the same ordeal. They won’t renew my prescription for Singulair and I have to try the Montelkuclast again. Montelkuclast is like taking a placebo, I get no relief for my asthma symptoms. When I get switched back to Singulair I am fine. The drug company that manufactures Montelkuclast needs to take it back to the development stage and do some more patient trials before putting it back on the market. Hopefully the insurance company will continue to approve the Singulair for me when the Montelkuclast won’t help me.

@ RM, Don’t give up on your generic yet. Try it for a month or so and it may be just what you need. Inhalers are nice but easy to become dependent on. I have asked my pharmacist to order me the first generic I was on as opposed to this last one and seems he will be able to do so. This time of year is really hard on me as the pollens start to blow and I have to have some relief from my allergies. Taking drugs for them is no longer an option for me as my respiratory health is not excellent by any means.

My Asthma dr. just put me on Montelukast. My health insurance, Ed’s Health Insurance and Storm Door Co., won’t pay for the real Singulair. I took my very first one this morning, and after reading this thread it will be my last. Oh well, back to rescue inhalers.

I too had taken Singular for about two years with great results for allergy infections. All problems I had were remarkably better, all but completely gone. When Montelukast sod 10 mg came on the market last year as the generic, I switched because I heard it was the generic/same as Singular and would cost less. I switched and have taken Montelukast for about 4 months now.
With 2 viral illnesses since, I have found it difficult to determine what was causing which, allergy or virus symptoms? It has been 6 weeks now since virus symptoms have disappeared, except for lingering nuisances which I was thinking “How long until this virus goes away?”
A ‘light bulb’ came on with me recently and I realized these are the exact same symptoms of why I was put on Singulair 2 years ago! It had cleared up the problems: infection around my vocal cords, bleeding of sinuses and constant stuffy nose, which are symptoms I have again. I am using Montelukast, Flonase nasal spray and Zyrtec daily. I am going to check on switching back to the “real” Singular!

Singulair and its new generic form is not the same. 2 yrs ago I was in the hospital with pneumonia and was put on singular along with nasonex and symbicort due to allergy induced asthma being the issue. My prescription drug plan will not cover the cost of singulair because a generic exists even though I have a tiered copay. Since being on the generic produced by Glenmark, I have had extreme moodiness, more allergy symptoms than when on singulair. Now am being forced to try other options instead of what has worked for 2 years. Very frustrating not to mention not feeling as well as when on singulair.

Well, they did it again. Now I’m on a different generic for Singulair and my asthma symptoms have returned. I am now having to use an inhaler when symptoms get really bad and did not have to do so except when I would get bronchittis. I feel like a human guinea pig when, with no warning, they switch generic drugs on me! Got used to the old generic after a difficult time and now they switched to a gold poorly compressed pill that is oval and it is way different from the last one!

Yep. There is a difference between singulair and the generic montelukast. I have taken singulair for years and wheezing and breathing issues disappeared. Rx Plan switched me and some family members to montelukast and wheezing returned, with indigestion and heartburn. Switched back to singulair by doctors orders and noticed difference within a week. Now, Rx plan changed again and now singulair is wayyy expensive. Now I have to switch back to the generic. They do not have the same effect but what choice is there when your Rx plan won’t cover the brand name?

I was taking singular since the beginning of the year and it was controlling my asthma… like everyone else insurance switched me to generic now my wheezing is back I’m using my fast acting inhaler more I’m coughing a lot sneezing out of control… and my lower stomach has pain hours after taking the Montelukast … I’m gonna quit taking it and take my chances with my inhalers… I wish makers would quit trying to beat prices and risking are health!

I have been taking Singulair for years.I consider it a “miracle drug” because I finally was able to manage my asthma with it. Lately however, I have been feeling wheezy again – thought I was catching a cold, but nothing developed. Shortness of breath really bothering me this week. It wasn’t until last night when I went to take my Singulair that the “light went on”…I saw the bottle read Montelukast. Duh. I had seen this when the prescription arrived but didn’t put 2 and 2 together.
I too have been experiencing weird dreams and indigestion but had written that off as Thanksgiving stuff…. after reading this I feel compelled to think that it is the switch to the generic. And, I have the same issue with Thyroid medicine, so I feel like I should have been on top of this.

Same with my daughter…she is a competitive swimmer.

I do believe that the inactive ingredients in the generic singulair is different by both Teva and Mylan. And my daughter is very sensitive to ingredients.

Very interesting. My daughter was recently switched to the generic brand and has adverse effects from it including stomach aches and muscle problems. When she goes back to the original singulair it all goes away. My son takes the generic by Mylan and felt bad for a while but it all seemed to go away. I contacted consumer labs and hope they test them out. I believe the way the generic tablets are released are not the same as original singulair.

I had been on Singulair for a number of years and was doing great, having no asthma symptoms. I was switched to the generic 3 weeks ago and am now having asthma symptoms again. I will be reporting this to my allergy + asthma doctor.

I had been on Singular for years, my insurance switched me to the generic. I have had headaches after switching to the generic. I had pounding in my sinuses to but that has stopped. The headaches persist.
I won’t let my son switch, I pay extra for him to get the Singular brand.

My daughter took Zyrtec for a while until we realized it caused her to have severe nose bleeds. We started with Singulair and all was well for several years. We just had her Dr give her a new prescription and pharmacy switched her to the generic Montelukast.
She is now having severe nose bleeds again. Clearly the generic is NOT the same as
Singulair!

I was switched to generic also. I am having constant indigestion, mood swings and headaches at the back of my head. I was wondering if anyone was experiencing the headaches?
I just started putting two and two together and making the connection to my med change. I was not aware of the stomach side effects and have been taking over the counter prevacid. Think I will stop the meds for awhile and see how I feel.

I am no longer experiencing indigestion with the generic cited above. Guess my system has gotten used to it.

My 2 children have been on singulair for about 6 months and did great on it. Insurance switched them to the generic version and all their symptoms have come back. They have been on generic for about 2 weeks. Anyone else have problems with the generic?

I have been on Singular for years, my insurance company switched me to a generic form. Now I am having nightmares, experiencing depression and have stomach pain.

It has been another week of taking the generic Singulair, Montelukast by Mylan, and I am still having indigestion but somewhat lessened. It has got to be some type of filler they are using. It is my understanding that a generic only has to be 81% alike to the original drug to qualify as a substitute for the original prescription.

My daughter has been on Singulair for coughing asthma due to allergies. Great results! My insurance recently switched to the Generic form Montelukast. She has a history of a sensitive gut (but no food allergies.) What side effects are noted and what should we be aware of?
Thanks!

Singulair only recently went generic, perhaps a month or two ago. I picked up my first generic version [after several years on Singulair also with very good results] just last week. I specifically asked about reports of different or new side effects from the generic, but was told there have been no reports. I had asked the ENT prescriber, and he said the same thing. So I am very interested in SLH’s report. Thanks!
Do we know where the generic by Mylan is manufactured? [mine is by the same manufacturer]

I have taken Singulair for several years and had excellent results. No known mood problems. This month my insurance company switched me to: Montelukast by Mylan. Since beginning this generic, I have experienced horrible indigestion and nothing seems to stop it. At first I did not connect the problem to the new pill because the indigestion does not start until about 14 hours later. It seems to disappear overnight. Any suggestions? Thanks.

My son (14) had been on Singulair for several years and was recently diagnosed with depression. There was discussion about prescribing anti-depressants. I did research on the web and found out that a rare side effect was depression. Several individuals reported suicidal tendencies and severe mood swings in addition to depression. My son has been off the medicine for about three weeks and is a happy boy again. Not even a moody teenager!

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