Generic Drugs May Not Be as Effective or Safe as Name-Brand Medications

Prescription medications are often extremely expensive, especially for patients without insurance that covers them. The cost of many prescription drugs causes patients to turn to generic medications, which are legally required to be virtually identical in chemical composition and ingredients. However, many generic drugs are manufactured overseas in plants with little to no oversight or regulation.

A report by NPR in May 2019 stated that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) often announces its visits to foreign drug manufacturing plants months in advance, giving them time to change processes or hide potential health risks, manufacturing defects, and even fabricate data and results. Because of these practices, drugs that arrive in U.S. pharmacies may be potentially dangerous or ineffective.

According to NPR, a drug investigator told the author of a book about the generic drug boom that patients who are on maintenance medications may be most at risk. That’s because generic medications manufactured overseas or in facilities with lax regulations may contain toxic impurities that can build up in their bodies. Over time, those impurities can result in liver damage and new side effects.

He recommends that consumers who take generic medications research them and their manufacturers. If a company has previously had a drug recalled or manufactures a drug that was subject to an FDA warning letter, it could be a red flag.

At Ferrer, Poirot & Wansbrough, it’s our goal to help people who were harmed by impure or dangerous medications. If you or someone you love suffered health problems after taking a prescription or over-the-counter drug, contact our drug injury lawyers today.