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1134609 tn?1269275800

Generic

It has been an interesting process, but I think I have finally figured out the medication issues. Here's the lay of the land:

1. I have always been sensitive to medications; they either work for me or the SEs are unbearable.

2. I have never had any luck when I have been placed on the generic brands of medications. Celexa especially; I was on it for 10 years, tried the generic several times and paid for it.

3. I have also been on Neurontin for the past 10 years. In a past post, I wondered if they decrease in dosage is what was causing me so many problems. However, I am back on the brand name of the medication and there's a HUGE difference between the two. Thinking back to my history with Neurontin, here are some things that I have figured out:
----From 2001-2006, it was a very good medication for me. I was just taking it for anxiety and was always on the brand name. Back then, I never had to take more than 600mgs of it and it worked very well.
---In 2006, the school pharmacy I was going through would only give me the generic version. It's all my school insurance would cover. THIS is when I started having problems with it; it didn't work anywhere near as well, it actually increased my anxiety significantly and caused me depressive episodes. The brand name never did this to me. I decided to dump it that year because of all of the problems it was causing.

----I stabilized completely last summer and I was on the brand name version of the medication. When I switched over to the generic, I started having problems and had to increased the dose from 900mgs to 1600mgs over the space of a few months. Any changes in the dosages over this time dropped me into a deep depression and I HAD to drop the dosage many times because it was agitating me. I just assumed it was because I was adjusting to the medication.

----My shrink upped me to 1800mgs two weeks ago and we decided to go with the brand name. I found, very quickly, that the 1800mgs of brand name was too much; it was putting me to sleep. So, I dropped down to 1200mgs (with her consent) and I have no problems whatsoever. I am taking the same dosage I was back in last August and I was completely stable back then. A 300mg drop with the generic would have wrecked me but I have been kosher. The brand name is FAR more potent and it has been drugging me up, more so than the generic version. It is almost a completely different feeling; strange. But I am completely stable.

So, I am very optimistic, I realize that the generic version of the medications can cause me problems and that the brand names work much better. It looks like I may be able to drop down to a lower dose which is good. 900mgs stabilizes me very well without drugging me up. I never even tinkered with the generic Lamictal; figuring that it would cause me problems.

Has anyone else had these kinds of issues with the generic brands of medications?
3 Responses
585414 tn?1288944902
Yes I have not reacted well to generic versions of medications including Lamictal and at times when that's all the insurance I had would cover my psychiatrist or neurologist will have to write up an over ride. Some medications I can tolerate generic versions of but it can often be a problem. Also there are multiple generic versions of medications and they all slightly differ from each other. Sometimes I've had a problem when the pharmacy stopped using one generic because it was no longer being produced. Generics are supposed to be exactly the same but they can vary slightly as regards the specific amount of the active ingredient (which is the medication) and other variables so this is a valid concern and hopefully it should work out. Best they write "dispense as written" on any medications you are prescribed from now on so you always are prescribed the brand.
1211960 tn?1272978102
I currently take the generic version of Paxil. I have never had the brand name so I do not know how the brand name would affect me. I have noticed in the past with another medication that the brand name was much more effective than the generic.
1134609 tn?1269275800
I have read that many generics only have to have 80% of the active medication in them and a lot less of the standard non-active ingredients that help regulate how the med actually gets into your system.

I just wish I had realized this sooner because, right now, the brand name is working so much better for me than the generic did.

When I was in college I LOVED the Neurontin. I only took 500mgs of it a day and it worked really well for me. I'd take 100mgs in the morning, 100mgs at noon and then the rest of it spaced out throughout the evening. It always chilled me out really well; I had severe GAD and I never needed anything other than the Neurontin. It wasn't until they refused to give me the brand name medication that I started having problems.

My shrink has already written that the brand name is ' medically necessary' for both my Lamictal and Neurontin, so I should be kosher. Insurance companies won't be able to jack me around with it.

I kicked over to the generic version of the Neurontin because the pharmacy started giving me crap. They had to special order the 300 and 400mg tablets in and over half of those pills came in bubble sheets. It would take them 5 days to fill the med and I got tired of the hassle. But, now that I am using the 600mg tablets, that's not an issues and I can use my pill cutter to lop them down into 300 and 150mg portions. It'll be more cost effective for me that way. Hopefully, I'll be able to come back down to a lower dose over the summer; I have always had more luck with the Neurontin in lower dosages. The bio-availability of it decreases significantly as you increase the dose and I get the same relief at the lower dosages without the cognitive dulling.

So, it'll all good to know. The only really bad bout of depression that I suffered after I was diagnosed with depression/GAD (and before the BP diagnosis) was when I kicked over to the generic Neurontin. It's nice to know that I really didn't suffer a relapse a few months ago; it was probably the Neurontin messing with me..
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