Generic drugs are cheaper...sometimes
January 19, 2004 3:37 AM   Subscribe

An AP story says that generic drugs are cheaper than half price brand name drugs from Canada. What the FDA doesn't say is that most of the time, you can't get generics. The FDA acknowledges that there is a 20 year lag time due to patents. So, if you want an old drug, fine, but most of the time, I suggest, foreign drugs are still cheaper, if you can get them from a reputable source that hasn't been bullied yet.
posted by ajpresto (12 comments total)
ajpresto, can you support the claim that most of the time you can't get generics? Also, I think it's important to realize that drug companies patent compounds as soon they are found to have any sort of chemical activity. The R&D process can be so long that sometimes brand-name drugs are only on the market for a few years before the patent expires and generic equivalents can be made available.
posted by mokujin at 6:37 AM on January 19, 2004

Even the generics can be pretty damned costly.

The prices also fluctuate without any real reason...

Take Xanax for example... The generic Alprozam is made by many different manufacturers, and can cost from $15 for 90 2mg bars to $500 for 90 .5mg tablets depending on where you get it.
posted by LoopSouth at 7:19 AM on January 19, 2004

and no matter what the advertised price is, it's also highly likely to never arrive.
posted by quonsar at 7:33 AM on January 19, 2004

no matter what the advertised price is, it's also highly likely to never arrive.

I've ordered medications from two different overseas companies and got what I ordered both times. I did check out the companies on Google Groups ahead of time, though, to make sure others had had good results with them.
posted by kindall at 7:44 AM on January 19, 2004

the juicy fruit is cheaper too
posted by Satapher at 7:45 AM on January 19, 2004

Forgoing Ask Metafilter, what are good, reputable, overseas sources that some of you have used?
posted by the fire you left me at 8:14 AM on January 19, 2004

To be completely honest... I tried one that spammed me and got the meds within weeks. It was average priced, but they didn't need a script, and with my insurance, I can only fill one script for a cetain med a month, and I ran out early...

I don't remember the company, but the price was cheap enough to where if I lost the money it wouldn't have destroyed my budget.
posted by LoopSouth at 8:35 AM on January 19, 2004

To be completely honest... I tried one that spammed me

posted by Armitage Shanks at 8:39 AM on January 19, 2004

I've ordered from 4 Corners Pharmacy and International Anti-Aging Systems.
posted by kindall at 8:40 AM on January 19, 2004

Hey now... It was an experiment. I had been getting pharmacy spam for years and I was curious.

Interesting to note that the package I recieved was not from the advertized offices in Canada, but came from India.

The meds were technically illegal as they were scheduled and I didn't have a script, but customs did not catch the package.

Also the drug, still the same base compound, was under a different generic name then I was expecting.

All in all, I would not recommend ever replying to spam... I just got lucky and got what I paid for.

Considering my situation, I had no choice... plus I was quite curious.
posted by LoopSouth at 8:51 AM on January 19, 2004

No such thing as generic Lamictal. Wellbutrin has a generic but not in extended release form which some of us require. In fact quite a lot of meds taken by bipolars are fairly new hence have no generic yet. Believe me, I'd rather have paid a ten dollar copay than a 25, or in one case $40.

It's all moot cause at the end of the month I won't be able to afford any of it.

Back on topic, some folks I know that have used generics have had bad experiences with them not working nearly as well.
posted by konolia at 10:48 AM on January 19, 2004

someone is a little pissed at
posted by quonsar at 12:04 PM on January 19, 2004

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