To J. R., Caseville, Michigan: You write that generic versions of Amaryl (for diabetes) and Vasotec (for high blood pressure) often vary in color or shape, adding that you would prefer to use drugs made in America. Today, most drug companies have locations all over the world. Sometimes the company headquarters is in the United States and its manufacturing plants are in other countries. The drug’s manufacturing location is listed on the stock bottle, the container that is delivered to the pharmacy. If you are curious about where a drug is made, ask your pharmacist to check the stock bottle for you. To date, 10 companies are FDA-approved to sell generic Amaryl tablets in the United States; 11 are approved to sell generic forms of Vasotec. This means that mandatory testing proves the generic product is absorbed as well (and reaches the same blood levels) as the branded product. Generic versions, however, do not have to look like the original drug. I suggest that you find generic versions with which you are comfortable, and then ask the pharmacy to keep dispensing those to you.
Published: January 1, 2009
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