Switching From Pristiq To Generic Desvenlafaxine

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Deb Says:
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I was switched from Pristiq to generic Pristiq (Desvenlafaxine) which if I understand right, is really Effexor. Is there a possibility this could be causing my severe fatigue? Has this happened to anyone else out there?

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PJ Says:

My Insurance switched me to the generic (not my choice) about 3-4 weeks ago. Depression has been creeping in and I'm pretty concerned. Yesterday/last night was bad. Today was OK but my energy is not what it should be and my thinking/mood is not where it should be.
Hoping to switch back but I don't know what is happening with the insurance...there is a $1000 penalty to go back to name brand!!

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Debbie Says:

Insurance is disgusting!! I actually feel ok depression wise and the fatigue turned out to be something else. I hope you stay stable

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PJ Says:

Thanks. I'm glad your medication isn't the problem. Hope you get your energy back.

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Maria Says:

I switched to the generic about a month ago & I was thrilled because my insurance doesn't cover meds until my deductible is met. I have noticed a notable change in my mood as well as increased fatigue over the past few weeks, and it dawned on me today that the change in meds is most likely the problem. Because the generic is so new I haven't been able to find much information about effectiveness yet. Sounds like our experiences are similar. I am planning to give it a couple more weeks and then talk to my doc/pharmacist about switching back if I don't see improvement.

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Serenity Says:

I'm wondering which generic brands everyone is switching to. There can be small differences even among the different generics. I'll be getting Breckenridge generic Pristiq on Monday, and definitely concerned about what I'll experience.

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David Says:

While I'm not sure of their inherent differences, generic Pristiq goes by the name "Desvenlafaxine", whilst Effexor is listed as a brand name of "Venlafaxine".

Nevertheless, "extreme tiredness" is listed as a side effect of "Desvenlafaxine" on Medlineplus.gov.

Medlineplus.gov also lists "weakness or tiredness" as a side effect of "Venlafaxine".

They actually go on to recommend contacting your doctor if this becomes too severe or does not go away on its own.

I also agree that the different binders/fillers can make a difference when switching from one manufacturer to another, whereas trial and error is the only way to find out what works best.

Hope everyone here is doing well!

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Suz Says:
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My insurance switched my pristine to Desvenlafaxine. It's been about two weeks. I've noticed depression slipping back in, and it's awful. I wondered if the switch is causing this. I hope more people write in with their experience.

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Ken Says:

My pharmacy switched me from pristiq to generic. 1 month later my depression is back. I called my insurance (cvs caremark) and they said I could switch back but had to pay a penalty. CVS is my pharmacy as well. I called 4 different times and they said too bad I still had to pay a penalty. I finally tweeted them and threatened a legal suit because they switched it without my permission. They called me and assigned an advocate to me who magically got me back on pristiq for 15.00 for a 90 day supply.

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Cjane Says:

I was switched too and I feel terrible - I'm tired, stressed an d my TMJ is back. Head Hurts and I'm nauseated. I'm great on 150 of Effecxor and 50 of Pristiq. I'm due to go to Europe in July and I have no energy and I just feel bummed about life . Telling my doctor tomorrow I can't live like this -these generics are terrible.

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Presk Says:
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Generic pristiq did absolutely nothing for me. I have been a wreck lately. Crying for no reason - no, not just crying, but sobbing.
not wanting to get out of bed, irrritable, tired, etc.
my family even commented on my behavior/mood seeming low again.

I didn't think about it at first, cause I have never had a generic work (or not work) do differently than name brand. As soon as I realized what was happening I called my doctor. He wrote me a Rx for name brand only. But my pharmacy is out right now(!!!!)
Should be in tomorrow and I can't wait to get it.
This has been an awful weekend and I'm just exhausted.

Not cool to play around with someone's meds like that. Not cool at all.

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Anna Says:

I found this forum because I've obviously been having issues with the generic Pristiq as well. Although I have not necessarily noticed depression coming back, I have noticed that fuzzy/out-of-it feeling of starting a new anti-depressant. I've also had nausea which as Maria stated finally "dawn on me" that it may be the change in meds. I'm hoping that just like other anti-depressants these new side effects will eventually go away.

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Zuess Says:
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I also received he Generic pristic, I felt pretty bad on it, low energy sypotomd of depression, my doc told me to take an additional 25 so I halved the pink pill and take one and a half seems to work well.

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K2SO Says:
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Had the same reaction to generic Pristiq, I've noticed no one has mentioned what generic they are on/having issues with. I tried the Lupin version from 2 pharmacies and had different experiences on each but neither was anything close to being "bio-equivalent" but this must mean their quality control is off as well.

I really didn't expect to feel much difference with it being a synthetic metabolite, how wrong can you get that?... Quite wrong it seems.
While it does feel like a form of Venlafaxine, there are about 4 different metabolites formed during the process with the parent drug still providing a powerful AD effect, the Lupin version feels like one of the other metabolites but definitely not the "desVenlafaxine" one.
I've been trying to get the Sandoz version since they have a reputation for the highest quality generics and are one of the few labs that does clinical trials on their generics to assure the highest quality but even though they are scheduled to release their version, no pharmacy has been able to order or obtain it yet.

I've gone back to 150 Effexor XR (greenstone approved generic-actually brand name repacked as generic) in the meantime.
CVS just notified me that they got the Roxanne Version this week so will try a few days and post my experience. Just be reassured that you are not imagining the difference, it is very real.

The Patent holder of this drug does not hand over the recipe or exact formula, each company has to reverse engineer the drug to come up with something "close enough" for FDA approval which explains the noticeable difference psychopharmacological drugs and why we can feel such extreme differences between brand and generics.

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Kate Says:
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I just saw your recent post about going on generic Pristiq. I have had the same problem and BCBS/Caremark said I have to pay a penalty to be in it. Anything you recommend doing to get back in the name brand? I feel awful again and need back on it!! Thank you so much!!!!

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Kate Says:

I am also having difficulty with generic Pristiq and will have to pay a steep penalty to go on the name brand again. Has anyone else found a way to get the name brand? Thanks for your help!!

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feather Says:

I'm glad to see I'm not the only one having trouble on the generic. My baseline mood is a bit lower than normal. More than that, times (like PMS) where I'd usually drop, I drop *hard*. The depression is worse than it's been in a long time. I gave it a few months, but I'm making an appointment with my doctor to see if I can get back on the brand name. Fingers crossed that my insurance will OK it.

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Presk Says:

I was able to finally get the actual name brand pristiq and I was starting to see a difference within about 3 days!!

I'm very glad I found an antidepressant that actually seems to work for me - and that my insurance gave the ok to cover it (even though they do not cover as much as previously.)

I hope it works out for you, too! Good luck!

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K2SO Says:
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Just found that GREEN STONE LTD Labs generic Desvenlafaxine which is owned by Pfizer is actually Brand Name Pristiq repacked as generic; they do this with their Effexor XR as well. So just tell your pharmacy to order Green Stone Brand and it's $10 for Vs, $385 for the exact same thing.

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Feather Says:
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Has anyone else experienced dyspnea/shortness of breath with the generic? I'm starting to wonder if it's the cause of what I've been starting to deal with. I'll ask my doc when I see her, but I am curious if anyone else is experiencing the same thing.

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Kate Says:
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I have BCBS Wellmark and was forced to switch to the generic of Pristiq or pay a steep monthly penalty to take the name brand. I was doing GREAT on the name brand and switched about 6 weeks ago to the generic and all of my old symptoms are back...depression, anxiety, irritability, and severe exhaustion. I need to go back on the name brand so I can feel better but will have to pay almost $300/per month for it because of the Welmark penalty. Has anyone found a solution to this? I'm desperate and want to feel better!!!!

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