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Friday, July 27, 2012

Generic vs name brand





(Costco)

This is a generic form of Zyrtec that is available over the counter. I love the price-it's about $15 for 365 pills-yes, a year's supply! And since all 3 of my kids take the antihistamine every day of their life, the cost can add up. (They also take 2 other maintenance medications every day for their asthma too. We spend LOTS of money at the pharmacy!) Some people are lucky enough to only need antihistamines for a few weeks in the spring or summer. Not our family. My kids are allergic to anything that is alive-cats, dogs, horses, trees, flowers, bushes, grass, etc. 

So when daughter Kitty went in for allergy shots yesterday, she was miserable. She was sneezing, her eyes were watering and she couldn't stop sniffing her nose. Shot Nurse had to check with Asthma Doc to see if she could have shots. I think Shot Nurse was worried about Kitty's allergies that day. If she gave Kitty her allergy shots when she was that miserable, would she have a bad reaction?

Shot Nurse checked with Asthma Doc, and he approved the shots. But I told him I was puzzled as to why Kitty was so miserable. She takes her antihistamine every day. Son #2 joked about our year's supply of pills and Asthma Doc asked if it was the generic version. He said generic drugs only have to prove that they are 80% as effective as the name brand drug. Wow! You learn something new every day! Maybe that's why Kitty is still struggling. I'm sure generic versions work great for most people, but maybe it depends on how severe your allergies are.

He gave us a couple of ideas for changing brands or doses of the generic. If you are still struggling with allergies-even after taking antihistamines every day and having allergy shots, talk to your doctor. Maybe a different medication or dose is needed.

We also use a couple of other tricks Asthma Doc taught us. To learn more about them, click here. 

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