When you get a medical prescription, you may get an option of choosing between branded medicine or its generic alternative. What is the difference between these two?
Every medicine has a generic name where the drug is an active ingredient that makes it work. There is a brand name that is given by the pharmaceutical company that sells and markets the medicine. Is there any difference in it? There is no difference. In the development process of the drug, an active ingredient appears first. The drug is protected by a patent.
It is essential to design the patent. It allows a pharma manufacturing company to sell medicine at higher profits and earn more. Till the drug is covered by the patent, other companies are not allowed to send a similar medicine that contains the key ingredient. Every patent has some definite time. When the patent expires, the drug becomes free. Other companies also get permission to develop medicines using that active ingredient.
These medicines are called generic medication. The brand names of these medicines may be different, but their ingredient is the same. Generic medicines offered by different companies may be different in shapes, sizes, colors, and packaging.
Is generic medicine equally effective as a branded one?
Of course, yes. It is because both contain the same active ingredient. Hence, both medicines work similarly. Why are generic medicines cheaper then? It is less expensive because manufacturers did not spend money on the research and development of medicine or buying the manufacturing rights.
What to consider when generic medicines are offered?
A generic medicine is less expensive than the original one, but its effect is the same as the original one. If the active ingredients are the same, then there is no harm in using any of these medicines. What about those who have allergies for specific medicines? Such people should check different generic medicines by experimenting with several alternatives. Once you find out which medicines cause allergy and some not, you can choose any of them.
Which one is better?
As mentioned earlier, there is no qualitative difference between a branded medicine and generic medicine. It is because their basic ingredients are the same. The cost of medicine depends on various factors. The complex is the manufacturing process; the expensive is the medicine. The cost of raw material and the cost of processing are also deciding factors. Since the effect of the medicine is the same, you can choose the least expensive one.