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Generic Meds

What is the difference between generic and branded medicines?

Generic medications have similar key chemicals as their branded equivalents. The biggest difference between them is the availability of generic drugs at substantially lesser costs. The catch however is, not all branded meds are available in generic forms. For a branded drug to be available as a generic med, patent of the branded med needs to expire.

Once a patent expires, the drug maker files an abbreviated new drug application (in short, ANDA). If this application is approved, the drug maker can make the generic equivalent of the branded med.

Why generic drugs are cheaper?

It is common knowledge that generic medications costs much less than their branded goods. As per reports from reputed drug clearing agencies, generic drugs cost as less as 75% to 85% of branded meds. These meds are available at a lesser cost as there is a substantially reduced initial research requirement (both in terms of efforts and costs).

Also, branded medicines go through multiple levels of animal-based testing as well as clinical trials. As generic goods use the key chemicals branded meds use, they need not have to go through these trials and tests. This is the reason why generic drugs are cheaper than their branded counterparts.

Is generic a trusted brand?

Generic meds also need to clear stringent standards set forth by the food and drug administration (FDA). These standards ensure that the drug maker manufactures a generic med which is equivalent i.e., pharmaceutically equal, to the branded drug. Such standards also ensure that the generic drug’s inactive chemicals are safe for human consumption.

Are generic drugs widely available?

Each time you are advised to purchase a med, you may want to know if its generic form is available. You can know if generics are sold by directly checking with your pharmacist or the treating physician. You may also search for generics through the FDA’s directory for drugs. You may first search for a brand name through FDA, and then look up to its generic forms to know availability of such drugs.

Do generic drugs safe to use?

FDA approves generic drugs if such meds have the same level of capability, strengths as well as quality. Abbreviated New Drug Application – ANDA – is carefully assessed and is approved by FDA only if the generic form meets the quality standards of the branded med. It is hence widely accepted that generic drugs are safe to take.

Cost of drug plays a major role in many people’s choice of meds. Also, branded goods are known to witness sizable price increases, either on an annual or biannual basis. All these factors make generic drugs more popular, and are hence widely used.

Studies done based on claims for health insurance indicate that the outcomes of branded meds and generic drugs are mostly comparable. These studies underscore how that the differences are much less for conditions such as chronic spells of high blood pressure, autoimmune ailments such as osteoporosis, mood based disorders like being depressed, living with frequent spells of hallucinations, few other psychiatric conditions and sexual disorders like erectile dysfunction.

Other key facts you need to know of generic medications

Generic meds help people living with limited buying power or disposable incomes to purchase medicines at much lower costs. Your treating doctor or caregiving team can help you choose which type of medicine suits your medical condition best – i.e., whether to go for branded med or a generic equivalent.

The bylaws of US prevent generic therapeutic goods to look like their branded equivalents. But, there are a few limitations on this front. Unrelated differences in packaging (both color and size of pack / product) can make it hard for users to recognise generic goods. Also, glaring differences may trigger a nocebo effect wherein the user thinks the generic may trigger negative / adverse effects in them. Regardless of these challenges, most generics are made with very little resemblances with their branded versions.

The US-based FDA monitors safety of generic drugs with top level priority. As a safety protocol, this agency inspects thousands of drug making facilities each year. If lapses in manufacturing processes are observed, the drugs made from errant facilities are recalled. Such initiatives make generic goods safe to consume or use. The same precaution extends if users of a generic drug report of adverse side effects. FDA directly intervenes into such complaints and takes needful remedial action by assigning high priority.

Last but not the least, if you are purchasing generic drugs online, it is important to check the credentials of the online vendor or pharmacy. A few unscrupulous online vendors may sell sensitive and confidential information such as user details, bank transaction inputs as well as purchase information to third parties. Hence, it becomes essential to confirm the authenticity of online pharmacies before placing your orders.

Disclaimer
Data and information shared above are only of supplementary nature. Information provided here does not substitute a qualified physician’s advice and instructions. This website is not suggesting that the intake of drugs it deals with as safe or appropriate. Hence it is advised to talk to your doctor before taking any drug.

Disclaimer

Data and information shared above are only of supplementary nature. Information provided here does not substitute a qualified physician’s advice and instructions. This website is not suggesting that the intake of drugs it deals with as safe or appropriate. Hence it is advised to talk to your doctor before taking any drug.

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