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just woundering is there a difference between generic Fluoxetine and Prozac?
is it worth the difference in price, and if so what are the differences?


Re: Prozac vs Generic


There is no easy answer to your question, but here are some insights to consider:

The active ingredients for generics must be the same compound but that's where the similarity ends. Therefore inactive ingredients, contained in all medications for various reasons such as tablet binders, color and so on can vary from one manufacturer to the next.

The origin of the active ingredient may or may not be the same as the brand name medication which may result in differences in absorption and distribution rates (known as bio-availability).

These characteristics are studied and analyzed by various research groups and the results may be available online.

Over the years there have been warnings issues about the bio-availability of some medications, while other generics appear to perform satisfactorily.

It should be stated that there have been examples of brand name pharmaceutical companies forming their own generic manufacturing facilities, where the product was identical to the brand mane product, but was sold for less.

Paying more for the brand name product should not be considered as paying an unjust price, since the brand name pricing reflects the the costs of research and development for the original medication.

The ultimate decision is yours, as the patient and consumer to make based on the benefits vs the risks of using one or the other.

If you have been using the brand name medication and for valid reasons and your doctor's approval you want to try the generic, have your doctor modify your prescription and give it a try.

Since the biologic half life of fluoxetine is longer than most other SSRI's, steady state plasma levels are attained after 4 to 5 weeks of continuous drug administration. That means that blood concentrations of the medication remain constant.

If you decide to try generic fluoxetine, a valid time period for the trial would be about six weeks to determine if you notice any changes.

Of course if you notice any important changes before that time, immediately contact your doctor to report the change.

I would urge that you not make a final decision about switching without a conversation with your doctor for his/her input based on his/her clinical experience.

David Baxter PhD

Late Founder
Most people will find no difference between brand name Prozac and the generic version. This isn't always true - for example, there is convincing evidence that the generic fluvoxamine is not as effective as Fluvox in treating OCD.

However, Prozac released their drug as a generic prior to the end of their exclusive rights to the brand name version. Thus, as I understand it, in the case of Prozac, the generic and brand name versions are exactly the same.


the generic and brand name versions are exactly the same.

Possibly, but I would add that since there are a number of labs producing generic fluoxetine, each lab with different manufacturing processes, different standards of quality control, different sources of raw ingredients and different formulations of inert ingredients, the end product may or may not be identical to brand name Prozac.

In reality, the clinical results among people using the medication may not differ, I'm just commenting on the statement of the medications being identical.

The following statement requires further investigation on my part for accuracy because I cannot vouch for the source at this time:

In the U.S. for approval of its generic product, the generic manufacturer must show in a bioequivalency study that the amount of active ingredient delivered from the generic product to the test subjects' bloodstreams is, on average, 80 - 125% of the amount delivered from the brand name drug. Meeting this standard allows the FDA to approve the generic product as a "therapeutic equivalent" that is considered "safe and efficacious."


I got the generic brand of Prozac and the pharmacist said not only were they the same,but it was a huge savings if I went with the generic
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