I know a lot of medications have many companies that make generics of the medicine. I know that the original Norco and most of the generic Norco are yellow in color. I found 2 white pills that look exactly the same and when searched the imprints on them, they were identified as generic Norco - 10mg hydrocodone/325 acetaminophen. The tablets, even though they look alike in color, size, and shape, have only one difference: the imprints. One of the tablets has "M367" on one side and just a line down the middle on the other side for easy breaking. The other pill, looking exactly the same, has the imprint "M523" on one side and no line on the other side, but another imprint of "10/325." Are these both really generic Norco (10 hydro/325 apap)? And if so, what is the difference between these 2 tablets/medications?
Difference between two tablets that are the same exact medication?
Question posted by anpa87 on 13 April 2012
Last updated on 6 January 2018 by riskmgr
The line on the back tells the patient that there is exactly 1/2 of the drug on each side when cut at the line. The one without the line, cannot be broken.
The yellow tablets are the brand name norco 10/325 but norco comes in 3 different strengths 10, 7.5, and 5mg. M367 is the same strength 10/325 but a different manufacturer and might be less potent and is far cheaper for the pharmacy to obtain and sell. (Because of new hydrocodone laws some pharmacies are unable to get it at all so they take what they can get) the tablet marked m523 is oxycodone and acetaminophen 10/325 (aka percocet) there is another company that makes yellow norco 10/325 marked with a cursive v that's vintage pharmaceuticals but the manufacturer will be different on your label because Watson and vintage both sold their remaining supply to other companies like actavis. The white Watson's are usually 7.5 or 5mg.
So, I can totally agree and attest that there is a noticeable difference in the effectiveness of generic Hydrocodone/APAP 10/325s
For the longest time I received the Mallinckrodt M367s (in fairness, back then I was getting the Mallickrodt 10/500s which have been discontinued) and then got bounced to the Qualitest v3601s - or maybe it was the other way around. But I always found the v3601s more effective but the M367 were "adequate" just "mellower". Now I may have had the Watsons at some point early on - but as I'm older and have been taking these meds for 15+ years I cannot recall. What I can say unequivocally is that the Sun 176s are THE worst, most ineffective generic peddled to date and had been stuck with them for the last few years ever since the rescheduling of Hydrocodone up to Schedule 2 from Schedule 3 ... a slight step up from the 176s (total bottom of the barrel in my opinion) is the IP 110s by Amneal.
Today I finally received the Qualitest V3601s after years of being bounced back and forth between IP110 and 176s ... just 2 hours in (regular as directed consumption) and the difference is night and day! I had forgotten that the difference was SO stark. Where I live, even questioning manufacturers or other similar inquiries is considered "red flags" so I do my utmost to "not make waves" because even the slightest hint of perceived (real or imagined) "drug seeking behavior" (and yes, questioning which medication manufacturer could be deemed so by the wrong pharmacist) could endanger my ability to continue procuring my meds ... I have struggled with considerable lower back pain (6.5 - 8 on pain scale) for close to 20 years.
But reading through some of the comments and reviewing the different generics it becomes clear that each manufacturer uses different "Inactive Ingredients" ... I'd be interested in knowing if someone with a better grasp of chemistry that I could ferret out if there is something being added or subtracted fro some of these formulations that makes such a substantial difference on how the medications are metabolized.
In the mean time, I will count my blessings that I finally got the V3601s and appreciate that I have at least 30 days of more effective relief so that I may continue to work in relative "comfort"
Thanks for all your input and shared experience
The M367 is Norco but the M523 10/325 is Percocet. The difference is Norco contains Hydrocodone & the Percocet contains Oxycodone.
I was wondering if the difference might be that one (the white one) is time released because I've had the same experience. The yellow version seems to act quicker.
I've read comments and the same thing was said when you could no longer get pink loritabs. Now you can't even get loritabs it's norcos and the gripe is yellow versus white. Nobody is happy with anything.
I thought it was just in my head until I found this site the white ones definitely do not work as good as the yellow ones I have Lupus and have been taking them for 4 years ,Rite Aid switch to the white ones last month the pharmacist also looked at me like I was crazy. I live in a small town but Meijer's always has the yellow ones
Yes the Watson brand are most certainly the most effective. I literally had to take 2 of the white norcos to get the same relief. The pharmacists that tell you otherwise are ignorant. I've taken all kinds of narcotic pain medications 5mg,7.5mg, and 10mg of hydro AND oxycodone. "Qualitest" or whatever the norcos with the V are second best. The "Malinkroft" or as i call them "Malinkrap" m367s, m366s are garbage. DO NOT WASTE YOUR MONEY ON THEM SO THEY START PUTTING THE CORRECT AMOUNT OF PAIN MEDICATION IN THEM OR LET THEM GO OUT OF BUSINESS. Perfect example of American greed for ya, cutting corners on the elderly and chronic pain sufferers to turn a profit. Makes my blood boil... I've been stuck whole months suffering with them generics so I can empathize...
I'm so glad I found this site and some sanity! I agree the white tabs are almost useless. Is anyone having any luck with the orange ones? I had to change from Walgreens because they never had my meds in stock and had to order which could take up to two weeks. The individually owned pharmacy I use now has the orange. They seem to be as bad or worse than the white. My doc decided to cut me two 2 tabs a day so I need this stuff to work!
If you are a chronic pain suffer and take these meds multiple times a day everyday for years you can tell a huge difference! I plan what I do everyday around the time I take my medication as I know my yellow norco would kick in and I could physically get things done in a certain time frame. With the white ones, I can't tell I have taken anything. I would bet my life there is SOMETHING very different. The yellow norco are not time released. I can not take anything time released because it bypasses my system to quickly and I do not get anything out of them. Maybe the white are time released and it goes right through me. It really insults my intelligence that the companies and pharmacies tell me there is no difference and I'm furious I have to spend a whole month in pain when I am given the white ones. I will start asking what color the pharmacy has before I get them filled again. I refuse to live in pain and get ripped off.
I have been on 10.325 for 10 years the yellow work better than the white one
It's definitely not a coincidence, especially when you have hundreds of people that agree that the yellow ones are stronger. I my self agree with the masses that they are stronger. Especially than the white 367s, I've come to a conclusion after some research on the FDAs web site. I don't have the link but if you search FDA guide lines for norco in Google you will find it. The FDA allows norco manufacturers a pretty big difference on the hydro. As long as the manufacturer is + or - 15% of the 10 mg of the good stuff they are ok. Which I think is bull because the manufacturer can sell 10s, and you could be getting only a 8.5. Which would explain the difference in strengths of the same drug just different manufacturers. I believe the manufacturers of the yellow ones are on the higher side of the guidelines, and the white ones are on the lower side. Just think there can be a 30% difference by law and they can get away with selling it to us. Just my two cents, and only my opinion
The difference is that yellow contains dye. The other difference is the maker of the pill.
This is more of a statement & opinion, than a direct answer.
How many agree with what I am going to say here?
I have been prescribed Norco 10/325 tablets, for quite awhile now. I just yesterday got a new Rx & new pain management center and physician, as well.
Note: occasionally I will ask for Percocet, so my body can have something slightly different. A change is a good idea, once in awhile... since your system can get too use to a certain medication.
Anyway, I have noticed for a long time now, that their is definitely a difference in quality & potency between different generic drug companies.
I very much believe that the Qualitest brand, is THE best out there! They are a yellow tablet with a stylized "V" on one side & "36 | 01" on the other side. These very much seem to work the best, out of all the generics out there.
The white ones from other companies just don't work as well, for me. I have heard other people say the same thing.
Safeway pharmacy is where I can get these. In fact, they ran out of the yellow ones a few months ago, & I had to get the white ones. Their was such a huge difference in potency & effectiveness.
Just a tip, for patients prescribed Vicodin/Norco. Their IS a difference in generic drug companies!! I hope this helps.
Ps- I know their is a rating for the different generics they make, for all or most medication. Eg, "AB," etc. I almost forgot about the letters ratings, until recently. I actually forgot how that system works.
I hope I have helped some people that use generic Vicodin!
I agree that there is a difference. I have been using white for years, I was changed to yellow of the same dosage. I only take one pill. I took one of the yellow, it was too strong for me. I had a slight headache too. I broke it in half, and all was well. There is definitely a difference, I don't care what the pharmaceuticals say. They need check further.
- Norco uses and safety info
- Norco information for Healthcare Professionals (includes dosage details)
- Side effects of Norco (detailed)
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