A generic medicine is a drug that is not branded but as similar to a banded or reference listed medicine in terms of strengths, administration and performance.
According to instructions and the guidelines from the United States Food and drug administration (FDA), a generic medicine must have the same active ingredient as the brand-name medicines as well as the same dosage, safety conditions of use, and administration.
The generic medicine is bioequivalent to the branded name product, meaning there is either no significant difference between the two medicines in terms of the rate and extent of absorption or if there is a difference, it is either intended or not clinically significant.
So long as the FDA measurements are met, a generic medicine may be marketed when the patent protection is over or the patent owner waives its rights.
The competitive nature of the medicine market means that once the generic medicine is available, the price of the medicine is substantially decreased for both the original brand name medicine and the generic medications.
Every medicine that has been manufactured by the original organization has patent protection, which lasts for a variable amount of time, depending on the molecule.
In the United States, for instance, drug patents only last for around twenty years. Furthermore, these patents apply for a long time before clinical trials have begun testing the safety and efficacy of the medication.
This means that the compelling patented life of the drug, which begins after the drug has been approved, may only be seven to twelve years, for instance. Most drugs, especially the life-saving one’s are then manufactured and sold as generic drugs.
One illustration of a notable generic drug is metformin, which is used to lower blood sugar levels in diabetes. Metformin is the generic type of drug which is also accessible under the brand name Glucophage.
Brief information about generic medicine and brand medicine:
A generic medicine is a drug that imitates brand name medications such as:
- Quality and Safety.
A generic drug must get FDA approval for prescription and consumption. You can easily buy generic medicine online as well as from your local medical stores.
The purchase of these brand-name drug alternatives allows patients to significantly save on their medication bill. 80% of pharmaceutical drugs are composed of generic drugs, making them a popular and cost-effective alternative to brand-name drugs.
With this understanding of what is a generic medicine, check out its differences from brand-name drugs.
Some major differences between generic and brand name drugs
Generic medicines differ from brand-name medicines in some of the following aspects:
- Cost: As against brand-name medicine, generic drugs are not protected by patents and exclusive rights. Patients can purchase the generic variant of a brand-name medicine prescribed by healthcare experts at approximately one third the cost of branded drugs.
- Color, shape and packaging: Generic drugs also vary in their appearance and packaging from brand-name medicines to give them a distinct product identity.
- Use of inactive ingredients:
Inactive ingredients like preservatives and flavoring of generic drugs vary from their brand-name counterpart. However, the safety of such active ingredients used is ensured through FDA approvals.
- Expiration date: some generic drugs come with an extended expiration date than their brand-name drugs. Medicine manufacturers ensure they are equally effective until expiry
How genuine are generic medicines?
A generic medicine is marketed and sold only after it fulfills all FDA measurements. It is ensured that its safety and effectiveness match that of the brand-name medicines it substitutes. It meets the below-mentioned parameters to ensure suitability:
- Active ingredients used
- Stipulated testing standards
- Form of consume: as a tablet, liquid for consumption or IV prescriptions, or as an inhaler
- The extent of effectiveness and absorption in the body
- Strength and indication for use
- Approved inactive ingredients
- Appropriateness of storage container
FDA ensures a generic drug meets all these standards or parameters before approving it as a substitute drug for desired clinical benefits.
Generic medicine available online in USA:
Generic drugs are available in USA pharmacies across cities and states as the FDA and USA laws mandate their prescription and sale.
When buying prescription drugs from online pharmacies, you can ask for generic medicine and benefit from reduced medical bills. Medication manufacturers also make them available online for easy access to patients.