06 June, 2008

Generic Prescriptions and those emails...

I've made a discovery the last few months. Beware "bait and switch" medications.

Readers from wayback may know I use Ambien (Stilnox) on a regular basis to combat insomnia. I've been using Stilnox to help ne get to sleep on bad nights for almost six years now. I still only need half a tablet to enable sleep, I try and avoid using them when I've had more than two drinks, and they have worked exactly as the pharmacological company designed them to, for me.

About two years ago I switched from the specific to a generic brand, and it worked exactly the same, half a tablet and I was waking up refreshed the next morning. Then the last few packs of generic tablets were - a bit different, a different packaging, different shape... And, for some reason, despite supposedly being exactly the same thing, far less effective...

One of the things Stilnox are designed to be, is non-habituating. That means your body doesn't become immune to them and need you to take more and more for the same effect. Another thing they are not, is habit-forming, i.e. I can go out bush for weeks and all that happens is I go back to my old sleepng pattern.

So imagine how cheesed off I felt when I had to use a second half tablet almost every time. This is the same generic brand, just that they've changed something. To make it cheaper, no doubt. And thinking that no-one will notice because most people pop Ambien like a party drug, anyway. Just to prove the point I went back to original Stilnox and - half a tablet, every time...

So before you buy that online medication from some "reputable source" think on this - in the case of generic ambien, I am guessing they changed the type of binder to be cheaper, and it's somehow made the tablet less effective. And they are a rather large and respectable generic pharamcological house. Imagine how badly you can get ripped off by online scammers, including tablets made with some quite nasty binders and fillers. Is it worth it?

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