Thursday, October 7, 2010
This list is comprised of what I feel to be the most useless, non-essential drugs on the market today. I got the idea from The Red Headed Pharmacist's Blog. In no particular order, they are:
1) Tribenzor - This "new" drug has 3 ingredients: olmesartan, amlodipine, and hydrochlorothiazide. Drug companies constantly whine that medications cost so much so that they can afford research and developement for new, innovative (key word there) medications. However, the geniuses at Daiichi Sankyo have combined 3 old drugs into 1! No need to pay generic prices for amlodipine and HCTZ, and your Tier 2 price for Benicar! Just try to get a PA on Tribenzor and (if the PA goes through) pay your Tier 3 co-pay. And those of you without insurance, just, please, don't bother.
2) Solodyn - Have you ever heard of Minocin? No, because it went generic YEARS ago and is now known as minocycline. Usually people take it twice a day and it's on $4 lists in some places. But this "brand name" drug is extended release--you just have to take it once a day! But it's near $500. Good luck.
3) Doryx - This falls into the same category as Solodyn. This is just an extended release form of doxycycline hyclate. Want it for $4 and take it twice a day? Go to Giant Eagle. Want to have your PA denied and pay $500 just to take it once a day? Go ahead and try.
4) Oracea - Oracea is right in line with Solodyn and is almost exactly the same as Doryx! It's an extended release version of doxycycline! What a joke.
5) Jalyn - OK, you want to make purple paint. If a can of blue paint costs $10 and a can of red paint costs $10, you can spend $20 and mix them. Or, you can buy the can of purple paint for +$500. That's what this is. Avodart (dutasteride) and Flomax (tamsulosin) in one can.
6) Oleptro - Oh this is a good one. Trazodone HCl was first introduced as Desyrel so long ago, that the FDA doesn't even have it in the Orange Book anymore. It was first used to treat depression. Now, it's mainly used to help people sleep. Well, now Angelini Labopharm wants to bring it back and make it extended release for depression again. Why? Why would anyone (in their right mind) take this medication. It's going to cost a fortune and there are already enough generic antidepressants on the market, I've got them falling out of my ass.
7) Silenor - This is doxepin. Why does doxepin sound familiar? Because it was already introduced as Sinequan years ago. Now it's generic and cheap for the people who need it. It comes in a capsule form. Silenor, on the other hand, is in tablet form and comes in two lower strengths. Apparently this is consider a good innovation by the FDA.
8) Suboxone - Before you start yelling at me about how this medication may have helped you, let me point something out. Suboxone is a sublingual tablet. That means you stick it under your tongue and it dissolves. Now Reckitt Benckiser decided to reformulate the damn thing into a sublingual film! So now in stead of putting a little pill under your tongue, you put a little film strip under your tongue! It's so innovative! It's just a Listerine Pocketpaks breath strip. By the way, if you go to the Suboxone site, the home page is overrun with ads for the soluable films now. It doesn't even mention the sublingual tablets. There is also a link for a coupon for $75 off your prescription. If the drug company will give you $75 off a single prescription, that should tell you how expensive this redundant medication really is.
9) Vimovo - Another great innovation from BigPharma. Take 1 generic drug, now available over the counter, and another generic drug ALSO available over the counter, and what do you get? Basically an Aleve/Prilosec combo. Now you need a prescription for this +$300 medication instead of just taking 2 things at once. Naproxen/esomeprazole. Just...why?
10) Zuplenz - Zofran is indicated for nausea associated with cancer patients/chemotherapy. it is available in generic form as ondansetron. Then Zofran ODT was released. ODT stand for orally disintegrating tablet. The ODT drugs melt in your mouth, not in your hand. Well, the makers of Zuplenz pulled a Suboxone move. They reformulated it (innovative, huh?) and now have approval for a "brand only" ondansetron film.
11) Caduet - Amlodipine and atorvastatin...Norvasc and Lipitor. Way to go combining two of your own previous drugs into one, Pfizer. Real innovative.
Another thing that pisses me off is metabolites. Medline Plus defines a metabolite as: "any substance produced during metabolism...in terms of medications, a metabolite usually refers to the product that remains after the drug is broken down by the body." Understanding this, let's look at some current BRAND NAME medications with their relative chemical name.
Xyzal - levocetirizine
Clarinex - desloratidine
Nexium - esomeprazole
Kapidex - dexlansoprazole
Lexapro - escitalopram
Focalin - dexmethylphenidate
Levaquin - levofloxacin
Do any of these sound or look familiar? You've probably seen or heard ads for them somewhere. Now, let's look at another list and try to find the similar items.
Zyrtec - certirizine
Claritin - loratidine
Prilosec - omeprazole
Prevacid - lansoprazole
Celexa - citalopram
Ritalin - methylphenidate
Floxin - ofloxacin
Do you see the difference? The first list is made up of metabolites from the second list. After being metabolized, a medication changes chemical make-up. After being metabolized, Zyrtec (certirizine) turns to LEVOcertirizine. After being metabolized, Claritin (loratidine) turns to DESloratidine. The drug companies took one step out of our bodies' process and patented the metabolized version of the chemical JUST TO MAKE MORE MONEY.
Let me make it simple. Metabolized means swallowed. Here's another example: after being swallowed, Ritalin (methylphenidate) changes to DEXmethylphenidate. In essence, these ARE NOT new, innovative drugs and insurance companies hate paying for them because they know there is a cheaper, possibly OTC item, that will work just as well.
This kind of nonsense pisses me off, it pisses my co-workers off, it pisses the entire medical field off...except for BigPharma. They just keep making money hand over fist at the general public's expense.
Posted by BigTechRx at 10:55 PM