Rhodes Pharmaceutical Oxycodone/acetaminophen Efficacy

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Jim Says:


My wife has been on generic Percocet for a number of years and she has always gotten a good response from the drug manufactured by Actavis Elizibeth LLC (oval shape with letters A3333). However, recently we purchased her medication from CVS pharmacy, which happened to be manufactured by Rhodes Pharmaceuticals (round shape, letters RH on one side and 10/325 on the other). She immediately started to complain that this drug did not have the efficacy of that manufactured by Actavis. Since she had been on this drug for so long, I initially thought her response to the drug may have been due to her body becoming adapted to the oxycodone itself. I happened to have a few of the Actavis pills and used them to supplement the Rhodes pills as an experiment. She reported that there definitely was a difference in the two drugs. I spoke with her PM doctor and told him of the diagnostics that I had run with the two different manufactured drugs and he told me to notify the pharmacy and complain of the difference in efficacy.

He stated that drug manufacturers are allowed to manufacture the generic drugs with up to 20% less active ingredients under the same name as originally manufactured. With the Feds attempting to make it harder to get oxycodone due to the number of deaths caused by this drug, that may be the reason the Feds are doing nothing about this loss of efficacy in the Rhodes product. In our area, the Rhodes drugs sell for less than the Actavis drug, so that may be the reason that it is becoming harder to find around our home. The only pharmacy in our area that carries the Actavis brand is Walgreen's Pharmacy. We used to be able to get it at Walmart but they have changed over to Rhodes. Now when we get her medicine filled anywhere, I contact the pharmacist and ask which manufacturer they sell and before I drop off the prescription. Also, before I pay for the drug at the checkout, I have them open the package and verify that it is the Actavis brand since they will not refund money on any pharmaceutical product once it is removed from the pharmacy.



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Anais Goodacre Says:
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I guess you live in the US? In Canada, the prescribing DR can request a specific brand. I had this problem also, but my Doc called the Pharmacy and they worked it out. In Canada, if one is on a Narcotic for a long period of time, one is required to register with ONE pharmacy. Prescriptions are written on a triplicate form, each time, one month supply, and must be filled within 5 days of the date on the prescription. In 12 years, I've never had a problem.

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Verwon Says:

Very good thinking, Jim. Under the Hatch-Waxman Act of 1984, generics are allowed to differ from the name brand by as much as plus or minus 20% of the active ingredients. Thus, it is even conceivable that the one from Actavis could be slightly higher, thus if the one from Rhodes is lower, the difference for her could really cause issues.

And yes, Anais, the U.S. is still behind on some of this, though things have gotten a bit better.

The FDA warns that this medication carries the risk of being habit forming and may cause side effects, such as nausea, dizziness, headache, constipation, and dry mouth.

Is there anything I can help with?

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