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Cymbalta Going Generic?


Peony

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I am very thrilled to not be the only person experiencing issues on generic Cymbalta!

I got a refill on Jan 7 and noticed they switched me to generic. I didn't think much of it, as I am on two other generic meds and seem to do fine. However, it was only days later that I noticed the generic Cymbalta is not effective for me.

Thankfully my doctor agreed and sent a note to the pharmacy to keep me on the name brand, but my insurance will not approve a refill until this script is up. So I have another week or two of feeling like crap before I can get back to normal.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Gary...

Can you look on your prescription bottle for which pharma manufactures your generic?

In reading some of the posts, it seems that the Teva one is the most common. If yours is Teva, read thru the posts - I think that many of the posters seem to have had adverse effects.

I tried the Citron version and my Doctor said that effect was less medication because of the way a generic is absorbed by a patient and because the capsule can be plus or minus a percentage of the brand name's active ingredient. I had symptoms like yours. My doctor said that the generic could have been as much as 45% less medication than what I needed - but doubling the dose wouldn't help.

Ended up getting an override from the insurance company but I have to repeat it, every 90 days. It's a lot of work because the insurance company has to put the code on my subscriber number, then pass to Express Scripts, which doesn't seem to ever have my records. I think they just want to discourage me but after trying Fetzima (which didn't agree with me), I have to stay with Cymbalta.

Here are the manufacturers that I know about:

Aurobindo Pharma Ltd

Citron Pharma

Dr. Reddy's Laboratories Ltd

Lupin Ltd

Sun Pharma Global FZE

Teva Pharmaceuticals USA

Torrent Pharmaceuticals Ltd

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I am so glad to have found this forum. I started Cymbalta 1 1/2 yrs ago for arthritis. It helped a lot ( I could no longer take NSAIDS because of stomach problems). I switched to generic 15 days ago - and have felt suicidal some days and awful headaches . I did not even start it due to depression!!! My FP doc does not think it could be the switch to generic. I am going to make an appt with a psych for their opinion. Thanks for the information. I feel like I am going crazy

I remember daughter being switched to a generic that made her very sick - generic manufacturers need to held to a higher standard!!!

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I am so glad to have found this forum. I started Cymbalta 1 1/2 yrs ago for arthritis. It helped a lot ( I could no longer take NSAIDS because of stomach problems). I switched to generic 15 days ago - and have felt suicidal some days and awful headaches . I did not even start it due to depression!!! My FP doc does not think it could be the switch to generic. I am going to make an appt with a psych for their opinion. Thanks for the information. I feel like I am going crazy

I remember daughter being switched to a generic that made her very sick - generic manufacturers need to held to a higher standard!!!

The ironic part about the generics is that most of the active ingredients are manufactured outside of the US. The generic drug is manufactured in the US - but as someone posted, the manufacturing process is reverse engineered and not exactly like the brand name. The FDA always warns about going to Canada and buying expensive meds there - but the Pfizer, Lilly, Novartis, etc manufacturing plants there, are just like the US plants. Yet, the FDA allows the generic manufacturers to import active ingredients and do the final production in the US. When a consumer brings up the topic of the pharmas manufacturing their drugs outside of the US, the FDA goes silent. The patent protection doesn't apply there - so the best that they can do is to warn us about counterfeit drugs.

Hey, I understand that the patent protection is given because the pharma research is done in the US and it helps to protect American jobs. But who protects the patient from the insurance company that forces a generic on the patient because it's less expensive?

I talked to the pharmacist about this last week - he said that many of the customers are struggling with all types of generics because many meds had patent expirations in 2012 and 2013. People who took the brand name struggle the most. He agreed that counterfeit drugs are a problem but he also agreed with me that the FDA requirements for "bioequivalent" effects from a generic does not mean that the generic has the same therapeutic effect.

The FDA requirements for bioequvalence means testing the amount of the drug in your blood stream. It doesn't mean that we will have the same amount of medication at 6 or 12 or 18 hours with the generic as we had with the brand name. For me, there just wasn't enough medication in the Citron version and I felt the effects immediately. It wasn't a case of waiting out the adjustment period, my brain felt different and I became anxious and depressed.

Teva has the worst reputation of all the generic drug manufacturers. The FDA revoked Teva's certification for generic Wellbutrin in 2012.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/davidmaris/2012/10/10/fda-recall-points-to-serious-problems-at-the-fda/

http://www.propublica.org/article/no-substitute-when-a-generic-drug-isnt-what-it-seems

More consumers should take the time to fill out the FDA complaint if they have an adverse reaction. It's the only way to draw attention to the problem - other than lobbying for insurance reform. I know that's not a comfort for anyone who needs to find an affordable medication that works for them, and it's a slow process. It took 6 years to get Teva's generic Wellbutrin off the pharamcy shelves.

Edited by Sayonara2013
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What is odd for me, is that after close to a month of not having the meds helping AT ALL, suddenly I am feeling better while taking them.. I don't understand it at all, and am still somewhat skeptical that they are completely working, but I am going to continue as is until something seems amiss.

The manufacturer of the version I have is Sun Pharmaceutical.

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I tried the generic Cymbalta and after a few days I developed hives on my face and shortness of breath. It was pretty scary and I had to get a massive steroid shot to stop the reaction. My doctor spoke woth the pharmacy and they said a lot of people had problems with the new generic and I ended up getting an override from my insurance brand name only. Its scary to think what was so different in the generic than brand name. Took the brand name for years with no allergic reaction at all.

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I just got my 60 mg Cymbalta scrip renewed and they sent me generics. Of my 3 bottles, 2 have loose granules. Has anyone else seen this?

Ronnie posted this about a month ago:

I counted (3) 60mg TEVA capsules - Total Granules in each:

300

313

301

I counted (3) 60mg Brand capsules - Total Granules in each:

200

200

201

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I found this forum while searching to see if anyone else was having trouble with the generic.

I'm on cymbalta for depression and hypersensitive nerves. I was switched two days ago. I've been taking Cymbalta for over a year, on the 30MG, but 30 was too much for me, so I take it every other day, which has worked nicely. When I was switched (Torrent manufacturer) things went fine day one, but yesterday I started intenstinal bleeding.

I'm currently waiting for a return phone call from my doctor.

I'm on 4 meds for depression, pain, and migraines. It is probably an intereaction between some of them that didn't occur with Cymbalta.

I'm trying not to panic, but I'm just so frustrated.

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Hi all. Just registered and new to the forums. I found this site after doing a Goggle search. I have GAD and have been on Cymbalta for many years with great results. I started taking the generic Cymbalta on December 30 and thought nothing of it. I was O.K. for about a week but as the old formula left my system my headaches (from teeth clenching at night) were coming daily and even my tried and true Imitrex couldn't get rid of them. Then the depression and anxiety started hitting. I occasionally had to take Klonopin during the day, which I almost never had to do on Cymbalta. I finally put two and two together yesterday when I realized that I was feeling EXACTLY the same as I did a few years ago when I tried to go off the Cymbalta. Finding this forum helped me SO much to realize what was going on.

I immediately called my doctor who called in a perscription for the original Cymbalta, but when I picked it up it was $220! I put it on my credit card because I cannot continue to function feeling the way I felt. I got two different answers when I called my insurance company, the first saying that that would be the price every month if I refused to take the generic but when I called to complain to a supervisor the representative said I just have to meet a $500 deductable and then it will be $40.

Either way, I did report my feelings about the generic form to the FDA.

And this morning I couldn't wait to get up and take my real Cymbalta, and I feel a world of difference already, thank God. What a horrible experience.

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Switched to the Generic (TEVA) from the brand a few months ago.... not happy with the efficacy. I may ask my doc to request fill for brand only. Difference is $35 more a month ($10 generic, $45 brand), ugh!

Or, maybe try another pharmacy that has a different manufacturer. I have had success with that in the past.

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i have been taking Generic Cymbalta for a week now and feel like i am withdrawing from a medication. i start shaking in the morning and get VERY nervous. i noticed also that there are granules in the mail order supply i received. i am taking 4 mg of Suboxone and trying two taper off to 2 mg then stop but when i take the 4 mg in the morning, it stops the withdrawal symptoms. i was so excited to not spend almost $300 for 3 months supply. also, even before i switched, my psychiatrist wanted me to quit taking it and switch to Brintellix because I was depressed again after being on it for years. it's just a coincidence that switching to generic for my last dose. also, her assistant put me on Vyvanse for energy saying the Suboxone would interfere with anything else. i'm still spending my days off on the couch with no energy to get a life then hate going back to work with no outlet except TV. i font think my insurance will give me anything since I've paid for 3 months of Generic and another antidepressant.

Not sure where to go from here but I have an appointment tomorrow with doc.

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rmp67r,

You probably are experiencing Cymbalta withdrawal because of the generic. It's a very hard drug to wean off.

The Vyvanse will help with your dopamine and energy, but it takes a few days to kick in. It sounds like anxiety from lack of Cymbalta and possibly some jitters from Vyvanse. By jittery, I mean that I can get fidgety - Vyvanse makes me tap my feet and wiggle my toes - and I don't know that I'm doing it.

The combination of Cymbalta and Vyvanse worked for me for about 2 years at 30 mg each, but last month, I switched to 60 mg each.

You might want to try (2) generics as an experiment and see if you feel better - ask your Doctor if that's OK to try it.

If your doctor changes the dosage of the generic (30 mg to 60 mg) - it's considered to be a brand new new prescription, which should be covered by your insurance.

Edited by Sayonara2013
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My doc suggested staying with the generic for a while to see if anything evened out as time went on. She said we could try increasing the dosage a little bit now and then to check for any improvement, and gave me a supplemental rx for 20 mg to add on to my existing 60mg.

I've been on a self-increased dose of 100mg for about a week now and I'm surviving, but not great. I'm not as bad as I was on the 60mg generic alone, but it's still not good. I still don't have the focus I need or want, and feel just irritated with a lot of things in general. I'm going to give it another week or so and see what happens. If there's no improvement, I'm going to get another appointment and talk with her about plan B - getting 2 prescriptions for Wellbutrin and an SSRI to take with it to sort of mimic Cymbalta. We'll see...

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photogirl843,

We're all here because we have one thing in common - the generic Cymbalta didn't provide the same benefits as the name brand. I tried Plan B which was a different med because the Doctor & I knew that the insurance company was going to require brand name authorization, every 90 days. The med was Fetzima, which didn't agree with me at all. It's an SNRI but worked differently than Cymbalta. I felt very hypomanic and agitated on it so I felt worse, not better. Everybody reacts differently and it's important to find what works.

Good luck and I hope that you feel better soon.

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Thanks, for the feedback Syanora. I was thinking of asking doc if I could just take a higher dose of the generic Teva brand. Maybe another generic brand is better but I'm stuck with 3 months of Teva brand. The withdrawals are getting worse as I woke up a 5 this morning starving which is my symptom of withdrawal then terrible anxiety. I'm trying to wean off of Vyvanse since I thought it would just add to my withdrawal anxiety.

My biggest concern is how depressed I'm going to get since I'm getting less of the antidepressant. Has anyone tried Brintellix? I haven't seen it mentioned yet. Is it hard to wean off of Vyvanse? This doc also told me to just quit taking Gabapentin which was a big mistake. I went off of it very slowly myself. Why do these doctors think getting off medications are easy if they are not opiates? I have an appt. this afternoon and hopefully will get some answers. I need a second job but can't get one until I get myself on something that works.

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Thanks, for the feedback Syanora. I was thinking of asking doc if I could just take a higher dose of the generic Teva brand. Maybe another generic brand is better but I'm stuck with 3 months of Teva brand. The withdrawals are getting worse as I woke up a 5 this morning starving which is my symptom of withdrawal then terrible anxiety. I'm trying to wean off of Vyvanse since I thought it would just add to my withdrawal anxiety.

My biggest concern is how depressed I'm going to get since I'm getting less of the antidepressant. Has anyone tried Brintellix? I haven't seen it mentioned yet. Is it hard to wean off of Vyvanse? This doc also told me to just quit taking Gabapentin which was a big mistake. I went off of it very slowly myself. Why do these doctors think getting off medications are easy if they are not opiates? I have an appt. this afternoon and hopefully will get some answers. I need a second job but can't get one until I get myself on something that works.

I would call your Doctor today and ask about taking 2 of the Teva Capsules. My doctor told me that the generic "tested" correctly in the FDA tests for the amount of medication in the blood stream - but I wasn't getting enough medication at a steady rate. Plus there can be as much as 40% variance in the generic - such as one capsule having 20% too much mediacation and another having 20% less medication. You should also ask your Doctor about weaning off the Vyvanse simultaneously - it sounds like it would be hard to do both.

http://www.depressionforums.org/forums/topic/98497-brintellix/

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i went to doc this afternoon. she said Teva wasn't a good brand and their Wellbutrin generic ended up getting pulled by FDA. She called in script for brand name Cymbalta but insurance rejected it since i just had generic filled. Have been on hold for over an hour now with Cigna insurance. Doc said not to take no for an answer.

Finally after being on hold, Cigna insurance will charge me $150 for one month supply of name brand and $450 for 3 month. it's like i have no insurance so i can't afford it. it used to just cost over $200 for 3 month mail in. I just took one now and i hope it helps cause I'm really stressed and jittery.

Plan is to get me on name brand to get me straightened out then try Dr. Reddy's generic as other patients have no problem with their generics.

I also realize I have been getting headaches off and on all week also which feels like pressure on both temples. I never get headaches.

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