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Generic Ambien vs. Brand Name
  1. #31
    beautifulrx3 is offline New Member
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    Yep, I had this happen. I have been on Ambien for about 5 years. Recently I noticed that the pharmacy started giving me generic. (small white round pills) They work ok, but nothing like the Ambien. I'm aware that my ins co probably does not cover the brand name. They also will only pay for 15 days instead of 30. After reading the above posts though I have decided to have a talk with my pharmacist. I don't care how much I have to pay out of pocket. Going without sleep is not an option!

  2. #32
    hatethefire is offline Junior Member
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    For me it depends on the brand of generic. There is a clear difference and it is frustrating.

  3. #33
    Charlotte BR is offline New Member
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    Default several generics don't work for me, incl. zolpidem tartrate

    I have found that many generic medications don't work- at least the ones whose effects I know, i.e. valium, ambien, painkillers etc. I have no idea if the generic antibiotics, say, are more or less effective. I am more than willing to pay extra for the real thing. There is no point in taking medications that don't work, and zolpidem tartrate doesn't do a thing for me. I am annoyed right now because a different dr. prescribed this medication to me and I thought it was on file at the pharmacy that I get brand. When I asked if I'd gotten ambien and my other medication the pharmacist said yes. Now that I have to go to sleep I've opened the bag and found it is the worthless generic, apparently the dr. didn't specify. I guess I'll have to stay awake.
    I have been told generics are exactly the same but that is not true. A friend pointed this out with certain drugs, and I have noticed it with others. Makes me wonder how many are bogus. (For me anyway).

  4. #34
    reeltime is offline New Member
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    Default Ambien vs. the Generic

    I had done Ambien and was switched to the generic because of my insurance company. I couldn't tell any difference. I do know that if you take either every night you won't have the same effect as when you skip a night. So, some nights I take over the counter melatonin , make sure all the lights are off, go to bed earlier , breath deep, try to clear my mind, and I do fall asleep at some point. I think your body gets used to what ever you are taking and you need to give it a break from time to time.
    Just my 2 cents for what it's worth.

  5. #35
    jlu73 is offline New Member
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    Default Generic ambien cr

    I have tried the Ambien CR generic.......I am VERY unhappy w/it....an hour or more after I take it I'm still awake....generics are suppose to be just as good as the brand names....but w/this generic....on a scale of 1-10....it gets a NEG 5!!....jlu73...Michael

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by jlu73 View Post
    I have tried the Ambien CR generic.......I am VERY unhappy w/it....an hour or more after I take it I'm still awake....generics are suppose to be just as good as the brand names....but w/this generic....on a scale of 1-10....it gets a NEG 5!!....jlu73...Michael
    I think you had the wrong med...there is not a generic for Ambiem CR ..only Ambien has a generic, it is called zolpidem...

  7. #37
    magnusfl is offline New Member
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    Default Ambian cr generic 12.5

    the first batch of the ambien cr generic is a near perfect match for me however the problem with generics is seldom with the first batch is when so many companies start making it,
    Will cause competition on to drive the price down and often drives quality down along with it.
    And at times this cause very cheep versions that are sub standard as I know I gotten some bad generic batches of flexural that were no better then a sugar pill

  8. #38
    magnusfl is offline New Member
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    Default yes the body can get use to it then become less effective

    Quote Originally Posted by reeltime View Post
    I had done Ambien and was switched to the generic because of my insurance company. I couldn't tell any difference. I do know that if you take either every night you won't have the same effect as when you skip a night. So, some nights I take over the counter melatonin , make sure all the lights are off, go to bed earlier , breath deep, try to clear my mind, and I do fall asleep at some point. I think your body gets used to what ever you are taking and you need to give it a break from time to time.
    Just my 2 cents for what it's worth.
    you are so right it why if you take the same level of morpine or oxy of people in real pain for a long time it will simply kill you.

    what I do that has worked is I use 90 days of ambian CR then 9 months of luminesta and then 90 days of CR again and it never seems to be a problem plus luminesta is the only one that aproved for long term use

  9. #39
    LJRobb is offline New Member
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    Angry AARP Medicare Part D & Ambien CR or generic

    I understand so many people's frustration with their insurers suddenly not paying their share of medically necessary sleep medication. I have been on Ambien CR since it came on the market for FMS/CFS, diagnosed in 1997. Ambien CR at least got me to sleep for 4 or 5 hours. As a chronic insomniac who has constant pain, this medication was a blessing. Without warning in 2011, AARP's Part D Enhanced Rx plan decided they were just not going to continue to cover it or even the generic form. No warning, just not going to pay for it. I selected this particular plan because it covered that drug and now I'm out $90 a month for nothing. I tried Lunesta and had a very bad reaction to it. Extreme heart palpitations and hyperactivity. My physician contacted them for a review which they denied. What's worse, AARP Unitedhealthcare won't even pay for the generic equivalent.

    Obviously the intent on the part of the insurer has nothing to do with patient care. Only their bottom line and if they lose a few patients along the way, we were only a patient number. An alleged medical review board at the company makes a decision that doesn't appear to be based on the manifest best interest of the patient. Only profit margin. They have no idea of the ramifications that sleep deprivation can cause and exacerbate pain and don't seem particularly concerned. Isn't it time that insurers get out of the business of being doctors?

    Based on concrete medical determination, only our doctors can prescribe medically necessary medications, but in one stroke of the computer key, an insurer can deny that prescription? When you call the insurer, it isn't a doctor who is familiar with your medical history that denies the claim, but some customer service rep (oxymoron) who just says sorry your medication is no longer on our formulary. Their formulary certainly doesn't consider how a patient is going to respond to the lack of a drug or to an alleged "generic equivalent." How our legislators and the FDA allow this to happen is astounding.

    I wish someone in our government would please stand up to these insurers and tell them that our doctors dictate proper medical procedures and medications.

  10. #40
    thesillybanana is offline New Member
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    Default Generic Ambien and Ambien CR vs non generic

    Ok, so normally I always take the generic on all my medication and don't ever notice a difference. However, ambien and ambien cr are not that way.

    I have severe insomnia and started taking Ambien about 9 years ago. When the Ambien CR came out, my dr switched me to that medication. The CR was a much better choice, I could take 12.5 mg and generally fall asleep within 20-30 min and stay asleep for a good 7-8 hrs.

    A couple years ago my insurance raised the copay for the Ambien CR, but not for the generic. I tried to switch but the regular without the controll release wouldn't allow me to sleep through the night. I went back to the brand name Ambien CR.

    Recently when the CR was released as a generic I was excited to try it and save myself a substantial amount of money. I was filling my script at Target, I'm not sure which manufacturer they use. I didn't notice a difference whatsoever. HOWEVER, this month I filled my script at Wallgreens. AND let me tell you they are NOT the same at all. I start to get sleepy, I lay in bed, but it takes me about 3 hrs to finally get to sleep. I wake up in the morning with headaches and nausea. I don't understand why the generic makes such a difference, maybe the coating they use?? I don't know. I'm not a medical expert by any means, but I am an expert on how I feel and this particular one makes me miserable. I will go back to filling my script (for generic) at target next month.
    Paul Izzy likes this.

  11. #41
    Paul Izzy is offline New Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by thesillybanana View Post
    Ok, so normally I always take the generic on all my medication and don't ever notice a difference. However, ambien and ambien cr are not that way.

    I have severe insomnia and started taking Ambien about 9 years ago. When the Ambien CR came out, my dr switched me to that medication. The CR was a much better choice, I could take 12.5 mg and generally fall asleep within 20-30 min and stay asleep for a good 7-8 hrs.

    A couple years ago my insurance raised the copay for the Ambien CR, but not for the generic. I tried to switch but the regular without the controll release wouldn't allow me to sleep through the night. I went back to the brand name Ambien CR.

    Recently when the CR was released as a generic I was excited to try it and save myself a substantial amount of money. I was filling my script at Target, I'm not sure which manufacturer they use. I didn't notice a difference whatsoever. HOWEVER, this month I filled my script at Wallgreens. AND let me tell you they are NOT the same at all. I start to get sleepy, I lay in bed, but it takes me about 3 hrs to finally get to sleep. I wake up in the morning with headaches and nausea. I don't understand why the generic makes such a difference, maybe the coating they use?? I don't know. I'm not a medical expert by any means, but I am an expert on how I feel and this particular one makes me miserable. I will go back to filling my script (for generic) at target next month.
    Really have found a big varity of Ambient products and effectiveness or the lack of working. Lets thy working though this together.
    Blue Topaz likes this.

  12. #42
    aliron1314 is offline New Member
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    I have been on Ambien for years and was just switched (by my insurance company) to the generic (a white tablet that is very, very soft, not hard, blue like Ambien). IT DOES NOT WORK FOR ME AT ALL!!! This is the first time I've EVER had a generic version of a drug I take not work for me. -

  13. #43
    aliron1314 is offline New Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by melinda7.5 View Post
    I think you had the wrong med...there is not a generic for Ambiem CR ..only Ambien has a generic, it is called zolpidem...
    I'm not a doctor or pharmacist so this is just from a regular (8 year ) user of (first) Ambien (I believe, at that time is was an oblong, white pill, 10mg.), then Ambien CR (I assume CR is for continuous release). It is a 12.mg, hard blue, round pill. It now has a generic version called "Zolpidem Tart ER". It is 12.5 mg. and a very soft (easily crushable) round pill.
    As I posted earlier, I've been on Ambien, then Ambien CR for over 8 years. Both worked for me, the CR longer and a bit better than the original Ambien 10mg. This latest generic version I have struggled with for 60 days and it just does NOT work for me at all. It has been hell trying to sleep. My doctor is writing a new prescription for Ambien CR 12.5mg. "LABEL AMBIEN ONLY" and after explaining to my insurance company (United Health Services), it WILL be covered by my insurance plan,just as it was before the generic version was released.
    Good luck to all with this problem...FIGHT FOR IT...if you can' t sleep on a somewhat "regular" basis, your life is a living hell.

  14. #44
    jaw444 is offline New Member
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    Default Bad generic Ambien CR

    I've taken the regular blue ones for years, they work fine.
    Tonight i picked up my prescription and saw that there was what looked like white pills in the bottle. The woman said they were generic. She asked me if i minded. I said no.

    So I took one, the same way i always do, i put it in my mouth and reached for the water to swallow it. I immediately noticed that the pill felt slimy in my mouth. I spit it out. the coating had come off in my mouth, IMMEDIATELY I didn't suck on it or hold it in my mouth. Like every night, i put it in my mouth and grabbed the water, but by then there was the slimy slippery texture, it wasn't like a normal pill that has a hard coating on it. The color of these pills is a pale yellowish color. When i spit it out, the pill was white, no longer yellow, so i guess the coating all just came off. I got a very bitter taste in my mouth. I tried washing my mouth out with water and very gradually over a period of time, the bitter taste got fainter and fainter. I'm not happy about this. Something is wrong with those pills. I called the pharmacy. The guy said to call back tomorrow and speak to the pharmacy manager, maybe he will exchange them. He better exchange them. They are not a good quality medication. Where were they made? In Afghanistan? In some country that has 19th early 20th century industrial technology? It's gross. I don't know if the ambien itself would've worked as it's supposed to for sleep. If i'd kept that thing in my mouth any longer, my whole mouth and throat would've been covered with a bitter chemical. As it is, i've felt a little queasy ever since a few minutes after having that thing in my mouth. Scary. I'm certainly not going to take it. Especially after reading these posts here. I hope they will exchange them tomorrow, and then for the future, i'll know to stay away from those. Did this happen to anyone else? Has anyone else had the coating immediately melt in your mouth, leaving a strong bitter taste? Did i just get a bad batch? After washing my mouth out for a while, i took one of the regular blue ambien CRs that i still have left over. Same as normal, a tasteless hard coating that did what it's supposed to do.

  15. #45
    Blue Topaz is offline New Member
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    Default Generic Ambien CR 12.5

    All generics are not the same.

    Get zolpidem tartrate ER 12.5 by a different manufacturer to see which one will work best for you.

    Blue pills from Winthrop do not work for me

    White pills from Anchen Pharmac work great, just like original Ambien.

    I have to pay out of pocket for mine because my current ins. will not contribute for the controlled release of the generic. ??

    Awakening in the morning rested and ready for the day is certainly worth the expense.

  16. #46
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    Default Useless

    <WallOfText> - Sorry its detailed!
    I have been on and off Ambien CR 12.5mg for years. The last few times it worked great for a few days at a time, then I would need to give it a rest. Rinse and repeat the process. 30 pills about 60 days time for me.

    Then I go get my newest subscription. The Generic Zolpidem Tart ER 12.5 mg. Took one by itself before bed. Not a bit of sleep all night. Tried it again to make sure it wasn't a fluke with the same results. I also keep some Melatonin on hand for the days where I just need a push for sleep (Without Ambien or Zolp). Throughout 2 weeks of testing, I learned that I can take 2 Zolpiderms @ 12.5 each, and slowly went to 16mg of Melatonin upfront. Later in the night when I was up again I took another 4mg.

    So a recap..
    12.5mg of Ambien CR worked great, 7-8 hours of actual sleep.
    25mg Zolpiderms Tart ER, 16mg Melatonin, and 4mg Melatonin a few hours later didn't work. Might have pulled of 2 hours of sleep when I finally crashed. As I type this now. I took my Zolpiderm about 3 hours ago. I feel heavy eyes, and enough energy to reorganize my room. But I wont, promise!

    I think its time I spoke to the Pharmacist, Doctor and Insurance company. Also I have tried 4-5 variations of sleeping aids with no avail. Maybe an overactive brain cant be numbed...I know they want me to do a sleep study. But I'm not sure that attaching sticky things to my head and putting me in an uncomfortable place will help me sleep or even give the illusion of what is going on that prevents me. I feel the reading would be: "Doc1:This kid cant sleep. Doc2:He is probably unconformable in there. Doc1: Must be overactive mind, give him some generic nonsense and it will be fine. Doc2: Is he giving us the finger??"

    That is how I see it in my head anyway. Hopefully someone has some insight for me, or maybe ill get a laugh or two. Most importantly we all need a good night sleep. Everyone has their personal reasons for it aside for its health benefit. And we shouldn't fee like crack addicts asking for it either (Local offices can judge the hell out of anyone that asks about sleep aid) Alright well best of luck to you all. Anyone with info/tips/advice for me feel free to speak your mind. Im off to bed, and by bed I mean watch terrible tv for 7 hours and wonder why the baseboard heat is making so much NOISE! KThxBye
    </End WallOfText>

  17. #47
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by cantsleepclownswilleatme View Post
    <WallOfText> - Sorry its detailed!
    I have been on and off Ambien CR 12.5mg for years. The last few times it worked great for a few days at a time, then I would need to give it a rest. Rinse and repeat the process. 30 pills about 60 days time for me.

    Then I go get my newest subscription. The Generic Zolpidem Tart ER 12.5 mg. Took one by itself before bed. Not a bit of sleep all night. Tried it again to make sure it wasn't a fluke with the same results. I also keep some Melatonin on hand for the days where I just need a push for sleep (Without Ambien or Zolp). Throughout 2 weeks of testing, I learned that I can take 2 Zolpiderms @ 12.5 each, and slowly went to 16mg of Melatonin upfront. Later in the night when I was up again I took another 4mg.

    So a recap..
    12.5mg of Ambien CR worked great, 7-8 hours of actual sleep.
    25mg Zolpiderms Tart ER, 16mg Melatonin, and 4mg Melatonin a few hours later didn't work. Might have pulled of 2 hours of sleep when I finally crashed. As I type this now. I took my Zolpiderm about 3 hours ago. I feel heavy eyes, and enough energy to reorganize my room. But I wont, promise!

    I think its time I spoke to the Pharmacist, Doctor and Insurance company. Also I have tried 4-5 variations of sleeping aids with no avail. Maybe an overactive brain cant be numbed...I know they want me to do a sleep study. But I'm not sure that attaching sticky things to my head and putting me in an uncomfortable place will help me sleep or even give the illusion of what is going on that prevents me. I feel the reading would be: "Doc1:This kid cant sleep. Doc2:He is probably unconformable in there. Doc1: Must be overactive mind, give him some generic nonsense and it will be fine. Doc2: Is he giving us the finger??"

    That is how I see it in my head anyway. Hopefully someone has some insight for me, or maybe ill get a laugh or two. Most importantly we all need a good night sleep. Everyone has their personal reasons for it aside for its health benefit. And we shouldn't fee like crack addicts asking for it either (Local offices can judge the hell out of anyone that asks about sleep aid) Alright well best of luck to you all. Anyone with info/tips/advice for me feel free to speak your mind. Im off to bed, and by bed I mean watch terrible tv for 7 hours and wonder why the baseboard heat is making so much NOISE! KThxBye
    </End WallOfText>
    Additional research finds that by taking the amount of medicine I have stated should have actually killed me. I am, in fact alive. And still cant sleep =-/ But I would NOT NOT NOT recommend doubling and messing with dosages like that. It can be extremely dangerous and lethal.

  18. #48
    Mordl is offline New Member
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    Just as a heads up, zolpidem ER changed their pill look to be almost exactly like Ambien CR, it was not until i took one last night that I further inspected the pills, as the typical wave of nausea and sleeplessness associated with the generic was apparent.

    The new look is a big blue pill, stamped ZCR on top, everything else is identical, even the yellow white sandwich in the middle, everything except the affects that is

  19. #49
    jas14892 is offline New Member
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    I take the new generic of Ambien..........the non-generic is no longer covered by my insurance provider. I took the new generic version 4 hours ago, (it's now 1:22am) here and here am I sitting at my laptop wide awake and jjittery, Like I've just slammed a pot of coffee down in 15 minutes. This new generic does NOT work for me. On the non-generic ambien, I'd have been out cold in 10 minutes for the entire night!!! This SUCKS

  20. #50
    carltonlindseyjr is offline New Member
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    Default generics

    Quote Originally Posted by kevin9494 View Post
    Has anyone who has been taking Ambien recently been switched to the generic version (Zolpidem) I just got my refill and it was for the generics which I have never taken. For some reason I doesn't seem to work for sleep (AT ALL) Now, I have never been critcal of generic medications, in fact, I really never thought it made a difference. Please post your experiences with the generic version. Thank You.
    there is no dout that generics are not always as good as the original. i have had the same expierience with ambien generic and asked my doc for samples of the original they worked like always. most pharmaccies buy the cheapest sub they can find to max profits.

  21. #51
    quayzar is offline New Member
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    I was on Ambien for about 2 years but when the generic Zolpidem became available I switched and did not notice any change. One month I tried the new Ambien XL (not sure of the name). I think it was 12mg instead of 10. Part of the medicine was immediate release and some was ER or extended release. The idea was to keep you from waking up after four hours. I did not work any better for me.

  22. #52
    yooper04 is offline New Member
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    I am new to this website. And I see this looks like an old post. I had a similar problem with Temazepam generic. I have used Temazepam infrequently for several years but I took one in early June and it didn't work. My psych said generics do differ somewhat and any individual may not respond to all generic brands of a drug the same. I am glad Ambien works for you. It never did a thing for me. I might get 3 hours of sleep and that was it. But Temazepam has worked very well over the years.

  23. #53
    yooper04 is offline New Member
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    It is interesting if you dig up the old research on the testing of these non-benzo sleep agents like Ambien, there is not much difference in the results of those taking Ambien, Lunesta, etc. than those on placebo. If you believe anxiety may be a component in sleep difficulties, then taking a non-benzo sleep agent which does not affect anxiety, may be one reason they do not work well for some. In the clinical trials these drugs produced an average of 4 hours of sleep. That is not a very good track record.

  24. #54
    cljdw2 is offline New Member
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    I have the generic,never tried the name brand. It seems to work ok, but I am groggy the next morning for an hour or so.

  25. #55
    lsodervick is offline New Member
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    The white generi doesn't work very well. I will get 2 to 4 hours sleep, at best. There is a peach color (I think), that seems to work a little better. Pharmacist has to order it. The white is probably cheaper?



    Quote Originally Posted by kevin9494 View Post
    Has anyone who has been taking Ambien recently been switched to the generic version (Zolpidem) I just got my refill and it was for the generics which I have never taken. For some reason I doesn't seem to work for sleep (AT ALL) Now, I have never been critcal of generic medications, in fact, I really never thought it made a difference. Please post your experiences with the generic version. Thank You.

  26. #56
    Nastiasiwannabe is offline New Member
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    I am a 25yr RN, however I have lupus & am not currently able to work. As nurses, We are told the only differences between brand & generic drugs are the fillers, so if this were true the only problem from switching from brand to generic might be nausea or an allergic reaction. However, when a change in insurance required me to switch from Ambien to generic Zolpidem, I found that it worked no better for me than if I'd eaten an M&M. I'm sorry to say that as a nurse, I know better, but had not slept in so long, I tried taking two. (I take 10mg). They had no effect whatsoever. I take generic drugs all the time & had no preconceived notions the Zolpidem would not work. Previously within a few minutes of taking the Ambien, I would become relaxed & drowsy. This is not the case with Zolpidem. I logged on to discuss this as I am hearing the same from both medical & non-medical persons.

  27. #57
    Waikibz is offline New Member
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    STOP taking sleep aids ASAP. They are addictive, and unless you have a serious medical problem, you don't need them ever. I started taking them recreationally, and then convinced my doctor that I needed them for travel. I lived the lie for about three years, which at the end I was a "Zo..mbie..n". My roommate would tell me of how I would come downstairs, (most of the time in my boxer shorts...I do not have an attractive body.) when he had guests over and give some monolog that had nothing to do with what the conversation was about, play a drum solo on the arms or back of the couch, and, in mid sentence, or "solo" fall over asleep. Fast forward a couple of years, and I ordered some from the online pharmacy, and my new wife said I would wake her up in the middle of the night screaming. Or I would go into the kitchen and cut up something and try to cook it...I would have no memory of any of these things. I would wake up in clothes and have receipts from bars....I could have cut off my fingers, burned the house down, or killed myself ..or someone else.
    Unless you have a medical condition, stay away from this "Devil drug"...no matter what you call it

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