Effect and Harm of Generic Drug: What You Need to Know about Drugs-Copies
For ordinary grandmothers or a person far from medicine, concepts of generic and original drugs are as incomprehensible as complex medical terms. Although it would seem everything is simple. The difficulty lies in a low level of public information. Because of ignorance, there are many myths surrounding original and non-original drugs. Confusion is completed by unqualified pharmacists, whose opinions about generics are radically opposite. Some sell more expensive original products and claim that they are indispensable, others argue that there is no difference between generics and brand drugs and it makes no sense to pay more. Where is the truth?
There are a lot of misconceptions about generics. Trust Pharmacy will select and analyze the main ones:
- generics are cheaper because of the poor quality. In fact, any generic (drug-copy) is by definition cheaper than the original drug. The thing is that to create a brand medication you need a large investment of money, which is then divided and included in the price of the original drug. Generic copies of the original, spending money on full-scale clinical and marketing research is not required. Well-known manufacturers produce generic products of very high quality in accordance with all GMP rules;
- generics are less effective. Tougher requirements for non-original drugs do not allow drugs to enter the market, which does not create the necessary concentration of an active substance in the blood. This is followed by authorized bodies that determine the effectiveness of generics in comparison with the original;
- non-original drugs can be dangerous. The state controls such preparations for safety of use and content of active ingredient;
- generics are tested less thoroughly. This is understandable because patenting of the substance, dosage form, and action in the brands requires long and painstaking tests. Generic is done by analogy and theoretically has the same efficiency.
Dangers of Generics
At the same time, to claim that generic product is of the same quality as the brand is somewhat wrong. Often, the original product has a patented release form and auxiliary substances that allow you to get maximum efficiency with a minimum of side effects. They may have the same auxiliary substance by name, but there is also such a factor as the purity of the substance. A substance that acts can be produced by an authoritative European enterprise or incomprehensible chemical plant in India. The same applies to auxiliary components.
There are no requirements for generics for auxiliary substances. That is, the manufacturer theoretically has the right to use almost any component, most importantly is that active substance is in the required concentration. For unscrupulous producers, this is an excellent opportunity to produce drugs of inappropriate quality from cheap raw materials.
In the United States and Europe, tightened requirements for generics, not allowing drugs that do not match bioequivalence to brands on the market. Only if generic is proven effective and safe it has the right to exist.
How Not to Lose Money and Not be Afraid of Generics
Generics are working, this is proved by the experience of not one decade of their use. Unfortunately, but not all are equally effective. This can be explained by the non-equivalence of auxiliary components, which bring the drug substance to the sore spot and promote absorption of the drug.
When you visit a doctor, you should ask for a generic drug that is known to be of high quality. Trust Pharmacy experts every day deal with drugs and the effectiveness of their reception. They can tell which generic is «working» and which is a «dummy». In the pharmacy, good pharmacists, you can trust, can also help to find a lot of useful information about the quality of non-original drug and manufacturer’s credibility.
Another tip: if the drug that the doctor appointed is average in price, then do not try to save too much and choose even cheaper. This is especially true for cardiac drugs, means for blood pressure and hypoglycemic agents. It is better to get 100% efficiency than at a certain point to be disappointed in the cheapest drug and get to the hospital.