Are Generic Drugs Equal to Brand Name?

The People’s Pharmacy, Joe Graedon, 01.15.2024, published “What Are Authorized Generic Drugs and Are They Better?” In this article, Graedon (pharmacologist) discusses potential dangers, concerns and benefits of generic drugs versus authorized generic (AG) and brand name drugs. 

Manufacturers of brand names are not required by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to reveal the proprietary formulation of their products. Graedon explains that generic drugs are reverse engineered to produce a formulation as close as possible to the brand name product, but they are only approximations, not identical. Differences in formulation can have impacts on patients. The AG drugs on the other hand, are identical to brand name drugs, without the labeling of brand name and can save patients money while delivering the same product. AG medications are only available when the original brand manufacturer discloses their precise formulation. 

Physicians and pharmacists widely trust that the FDA ensures that all generic drugs are formulated exactly to brand name. Patients are at risk when generic medications (non-authorized generic medications) do not have the same effectiveness, absorption rates, or pharmacokinetics as the brand name formulas.


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