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Is fioricet generic westward 787 preferable over watson 3369?

12 Answers

creativetouch 31 Jan 2020

I love the Fioricet by Westward 787, it's the only one that works for my headaches, which are mostly tension ones now instead of full blown migraines. You can't get them anymore because the manufacturer stopped making them. I called and asked why and the customer service person didn't know, said it was a sales & marketing issue. Maybe we should all band together and call the company and tell them WE NEED YOUR FIORICET !!! Watson and Qualitest did nothing. I took both of them for 2-3 years around 2013, hoping they would work. I should have stopped long before that. See my information below.

Now a possible WARNING. When doing some research on the "filler" ingredients, I found out (2) of them were not good, in my opinion. Croscarmellose sodium says "There is a link between this and high blood pressure." Crospovidone says "The long term effects of this in the lung are unknown." Be sure to check out ALL INGREDIENTS in a drug you are thinking of taking.

Votes: +0
amshope20 24 Oct 2020

What is best to use now 2020??? I need to find something. Thx

amshope20 24 Oct 2020

What is best to use now 2020??? I need to find something. Thx

j21babydoll 7 Aug 2019

Am so glad I am not alone on this. I can only take the blue ones. but lately I cant find them anywhere

Votes: +0
Ruby59 8 July 2019

The blue capsules and tablets by Lannett, do not work for me at all. I was on qualitest, white tabs , which helped tremendously, but are no longer available to the major pharmacies. I am going to try Watson tomorrow. I had brain surgery & my headaches are debilitating.

Votes: +0
diwi49 28 July 2015

I just looked this "blue" pill up because I usually get the white ones from CVS, first the caplets which worked fairly well and the round ones which barely work at all. So I am glad to know that these blue ones will be more effective.

But I wanted to let you all know of a weird anomaly that worked extremely well in cutting most of my migraine headaches out by about 98 %. I had been given Verapamil for prophylactic migraine treatment from a headache specialist, which did nothing, but I continued to take it just in case. Then I had a heart issue several years ago and my cholesterol was somewhat high so my cardiologist gave me Lipitor specifically because it has an anti-inflammatory component. And as soon as I mixed the 2 drugs my headaches went away. I mean the next day! Maybe I have 1 or 2 actual migraines in a year now, usually from a food trigger.


But I used to wake up daily with that slightly sick feeling that was what I call a pre-migraine. Anything could turn that into a full-out 12-hour pounding sick headache… chocolate, stress, heat, sun, etc. Since I take those 2 drugs together that pre-migraine stuff has completely gone away. It is completely "off book", not ever clinically tried, not mentioned anywhere. It is completely accidental that it works. And if I stop taking one or the other, that pre-migraine head sick feeling comes back. Ask your doctor. Maybe it will work for you too. Also it is not any statin, just Lipitor and its generic atorvastatin. Crestor and Zocor do not have the same effect nor that anti-inflammatory, at least on me, and I also have a sulfate sensitivity. The reason I take Fioricet at all now is for adjunctive pain relief for something else, not migraine, which is also off the book. But if it works and does no harm, I am happy, and that is my own choice for myself. So the combo is Verapamil and Lipitor. Your doctor can decide what dosage levels or not are right for you.

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tessie 787 25 June 2013

The inactive ingredients are indeed different between Watson 369 and the old blue Westward 787.

Watson ones have crosprovidon listed first. Magnesium is listed first on West Ward. Check it out. I bet if you increased your magnesium, you would do well!!! Magnesium is so beneficial to the nervous system. I will do that!!!

You would have to check on providone, that is listed too for Watson.

Interesting that the 787 one has Sodium Starch Glycolate in it. Happy Hunting!

Votes: +0
Kapri 25 June 2013

Great info, and yes I just read a week ago about magnesium and migraines, but the concern was about the white fioricet by qualitest that don't work at all, I'm well aware of Watson (name brand) and westward 787 (generic brand) thanks

lucylovesred 30 Nov 2013

I am 64 and have been using Fioricet for years and dealing with all the above generic issues. I have spoken directly to many of the manufacturers and many pharmacists. QUALITEST is the most cheaply produced generic which is why so many insurance companies will cover it the most. I agree that WESTWARD 787 is far better than Watson 3369 and I won't even take QUALITEST. THE VERY BEST GENERIC is by a company called MikArt. It costs a little more to manufacture so it costs pharmacies a little more and they often won't carry it. Here is the solution. Find a mom n pop independent pharmacy in your area and use it. They have the freedom to order what they want. CVS, KMart, Walgreen etc. are bound by corporate policy and can only order from particular regional middleman warehouses. For years I got the MikArt product from KMart. Now they want to charge me $75.00 per refill. I now order through and independent pharmacy and each refill is $25 without even using my insurance.


I actually was referred to this pharmacy after talking directly to MikArt which is located in the south. This past summer I got a quote from Kmart for Watson at $I79 per refill and found it at a mom n pop for $15.96. I would NOT BELIEVE there could be such a discrepency if I hadn't lived it. I have no clue what kind of politics are involved in all this but I was told by a chain employed pharmacist that the chain drugstores make a huge profit off their pharmacies. I am calling WestWard Monday because I have been told by some pharmacists that they are on backorder and just yesterday another pharmacist said the manufacturer is discontinuing them???
You just have to be willing to do the research and the footwork. Goodluck from
a frustrated fellow sufferer. _

tessie 787 25 June 2013

Not sure what happened to post.

Prefer 787 over Watson for sure. Walmart has it or did a year ago.

Having complex migraines too often. Got hives from Topamax.

Be careful! Complex migraines mimic stroke like symptoms. They
changed my small vessels in my brain which affect white matter. Keep
eating things that increase blood flow. I don't have high blood pressure or diabetes. But, I do have low blood sugar at times and low blood pressure.
Check on line for keeping veins clear in your brain!

Votes: +0
tessie 787 25 June 2013

old=Formula C11H16N2O3 787
new= Formula C11H16N2O3  Watson

Maybe the other ingredients are a bit different.

Checking. Tessie 787

Votes: +0
Kapri 30 Nov 2013

Yes the formula for all of them are different I believe it's the magnesium and another ingredient

crh33629 11 April 2013

I prefer the Westward Blue pills much better.

Votes: +0
Kapri 11 April 2013

So do I even over the brand name Watson, however they do give me some relief when the white ones by Qualitest do absolutely NOTHING! It's so frustrating uggghh

sara12345 14 Feb 2013

Are the Westward ones the brand name medication? If so, then that's all that the doctor has to indicate. Can't recall exactly, something like dispense as directed? If I tell my doctor to order Westward pills, they may not be aware of the manufacturer and not do it. I've found the same problem with the pills not working nearly as well. I thought it was just me. THANK YOU to all.

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kaneary 11 April 2013

Watson blue tabs are the original Fioricet - they actually say it on the tablet on one side and the other there is an image of 3 heads. The Westward generics are also blue, but only have "Westward 787" stamped on them. The other generics from both Watson and Qualitest are white. For some reason, it is the white tablets that I find do not work as well... You would think that the Watson tabs would work since they are the original manufacturer of Fioricet, but I guess their cheap version leaves out some magic that the blue Westwards have...

Kapri 11 April 2013

Exactly but the Watson blue pill works for me,, and I don't even bother to purchase the white ones waste of money

tbjoanna 8 Nov 2013

Amazing!!! I am looking up photos of round, blue generic fioricet for just this reason! I saw my neurologist yesterday, and he wrote my script to be for round blue! I told him I might as well take m&m's as take the round white - at least I'd enjoy the chocolate. I've had the oblong white, by Mikart, I believe, with mixed results. Watson makes a round blue with a logo of 3 concentric heads, and they're carried at Walgreen's, I think. My neurologist didn't think the brand was even being made anymore. A couple of years ago, when my former employer switched mail-away providers, I called and asked what the fioricet looked like. The rep switched me over to a pharmacist, and he knew exactly what I was talking about - he was a migraine sufferer, and he said only the round blue worked for him, as well! If I can track who sells the West-ward, I'll post it.

sara12345 9 Nov 2013

Thank you Joanna for letting us know, if you can find out.

tbjoanna 9 Nov 2013

Okay - here's the latest... I spoke with the west-ward headquarters in New Jersey yesterday - very nice people - it's currently backordered until early next year (yikes!). And, because they don't sell directly to drugstores, but to distributors, they couldn't tell me who might have some left in stock. They told me to check back in at the end of December for an update. And yes, they get tons of calls telling them what we all know - the other generic Fioricet don't work! I visited 5 different pharmacies yesterday afternoon, one normally used west-ward but was out, and immediately recalled two panicked patients who didn't want white pills; and the rest used Qualitest or Mikart. I think Qualitest is round and the Mikart oblong, with a score mark. I've never tried the Watson (round blue) which I believe someone identified as brand name, but if it has a different first ingredient, I'm skeptical about whether it would be effective either.

kaneary 9 Nov 2013

Yes, according to Kaiser pharmacists, apparently there is a "national shortage"on name brand Fioricet as well as the blue Westward generics... I was switched to name brand Esgic, which, as I understand from my neurologist, is prescribed interchangeably as name brand Fioricet (like Advil and Motrin are both name brands of ibuprofen) - this is not another generic. It does work like the blues do for me, but it also does seem to give me rebound headaches that Fioricet and Westwards have not. But, this may be an alternative you all may try during the shortage... They are oblong, look them up on, you may also look into other name brands like Orbivan (which I have not tried but would be interested to hear about).

sara12345 9 Nov 2013

Thank you both so very much for your research.

How is it that a manufacturer has a pill not in stock for months? Do they have difficulty getting the ingredients from somewhere? Makes you wonder.

cfortner1 22 Dec 2013

I too have suffered headaches for 25 years and 22 years used the blue fiorocet brand only. The white tablets are useless. This seems to have happened in conjunction with the new federal mandate to lower the amount of Tylenol in the drug is this true? Is anyone able to get this medication for those of us suffering or is there a viable alternative as I am a healthcare professional I am actively pursing options such as fioronal.

kaneary 22 Dec 2013

I was able to get the newer Fioricet brand capsules (a opposed to the familiar blue tablets) which do have the lower Tylenol (300mg vs. 325mg.) requirements, otherwise the are the same. I actually prefer them since they don't taste bad and don't cost more at Kaiser, plus I don't have difficulty swallowing capsules, some might. If you don't like the generics offered and find Fioricet name brand is cheap (it is generally), request this, I think you'll be pleased.

kaneary 25 Dec 2013

Ok, I need to revise my last comment based on new evidence... after I commented that you all should try the Fioricet capsule, I started thinking... I've had so many breakthrough migraines lately and realized they did not improve when I started back on this capsule - switched back from the Esgic to the name brand Fioricet capsule - which the pharmacists at Kaiser swore were exactly the same formulation as the old tablet EXCEPT for the new 300mg vs. 325mg. of Tylenol (APAP). Dummy me, believed him. After my post here, it dawned on me that these capsules may actually be the generics in a sweet Fioricet Brand disguise. I realized, that the trickory may have the reason for my increasing breakthrough migraines, which I thought were due to the weather and seasonal stressors... I realize now, they are REBOUND headaches. SO, I decided to call Actavis Pharmaceuticals directly and talk with them to find out specifically what the difference was in the Fioricet tablets vs.


these new Fioricet capsules and why they changed them. After speaking with several representatives, including one of the Pharmacy Engineers that actually engineered the new capsules, this is exactly what they told me: the active ingredients are the same, except for the APAP (Tylenol) changes, which are now federally mandated to be 25mg. less per pill, HOWEVER, they have now changed the INACTIVE ingredients... (which I argued were OBVIOUSLY very important for metabolizing - he did NOT disagree) and this capsule now contains the equivalent of essentially a cheaper version of Fioricet... he essentially confirmed (by not denying). Here is the low down:
Fioricet TABLET is supplied in tablet form for oral administration.
Each tablet contains the following active ingredients:
butalbital USP . . . . . . . . . . . .50 mg
acetaminophen USP . . . . . . 325 mg
caffeine USP . . . . . . . . . . . . .40 mg
Inactive Ingredients: crospovidone, FD&C Blue #1, magnesium stearate, microcrystalline cellulose, povidone, pregelatinized starch, and stearic acid.


Fioricet CAPSULE is supplied in hard-gelatin capsule form for oral administration.
Each capsule contains the following active ingredients:
Butalbital, USP……………………50 mg
Acetaminophen, USP…………….300 mg
Caffeine, USP……………………..40 mg
Inactive Ingredients: sodium lauryl sulfate, talc, microcrystalline cellulose, stearic acid, FD&C red # 40, titanium dioxide, FD&C blue # 1,FD&C yellow # 6, gelatin.

I spoke to both a Customer Rep who said that the switch was made and the tablets were "discontinued" because of a "business decision" which she would not elaborate on AT ALL and kept answering abruptly with "it was a 'business decision'" and left it at that, even when I said, "so Actavis Phamaceuticals doesn't care that there are thousands of migraine sufferers that are going to be getting NO relief or will be suffering even more now that you've changes a formula that has worked so that you could save some money because it was a 'business decision??' That certainly does not seem like a GOOD business decision. Hopefully Westward will be continuing to stock there 787 tablet version!" she just said that she would transfer me to their "Adverse Reactions Department" so I could make a claim. I did. I also called Kaiser to switch me back to Westward 787... unfortunately, the pharmacists told me that they would have more luck getting stock of discontinued Fioricet tablets than they would of backordered Westward 787 tablets!!! Please everyone, if you can, report the Fioricet capsules or the other bogus generic versions to the pharmaceutical companies or to the FDA to spark investigations to see if they are even containing the active ingredients they say they are. The Wellbutrin knock offs got busted for that...

sara12345 26 Dec 2013

Thank you so much for the information. All who see this should do as you suggest. Go the FDA website under Drugs. You can probably find it on your own. Or under “Recalls & Alerts”, click on “MedWatch: The FDA …”. Then click “Wanted: Consumers to Report Problems”. You can do it right online.

Kapri 13 Feb 2013

Actually the white fioricet don't work they are BULLSHIT sorry for the language but im so upset because ever since they didn't have the blue at Rite Aid this January I've been in and out the E R like crazy, and they have them nowhere I'm going to call West Ward and complain and get some answers as we all should because we all know that migraines are not to be played with

Votes: +0
kaneary 13 Feb 2013

Kapri, the white tabs are manufactured by a totally different company - they are not Westward like your previous blue pills. They are another generic Fioricet, manufactured either by Watson or Qualitest(?). Talk to your doctor and let them know that they "do not metabolize" the same as the Westward blue tablets that you had before. I complained and my doctor made a permanent notation to the pharmacy that my prescriptions must be for the Westward blue tablets.

crh33629 11 April 2013

I agree with you. The white ones aren't much better than Tylenol. The blue ones work. Did you find out if West-ward is still making them.

Kapri 11 April 2013

Yes I found out they still make them Westward says its been a shortage, and yes I'm quite aware that the white ones are by Qualitest and the blue Watson are name brand which I had to pay $100.00 for 40 pills smh but I needed them and I have no insurance at the moment, and actually the Westward blue are generics and the Watson blue are Brand name different manufacturers

kaneary 11 April 2013

The blue Watson's are the original Fioricet tablets which is why you are paying so much. Request the Westward blue generics and you will pay FAR less. They are very cheap and they do work. Also, if you have no insurance, try going to Costco for your meds. They are also very helpful in helping you get a specific request, like generic blue Westward tabs rather than Watson or Qualitest white tabs... Good luck!

Kapri 11 April 2013

Thank you very much Kaneary even without ins I use to get 60 westward for $18.00 I will try Costco thank you

ckesler69 20 May 2013

westward at a freds pharmacy store if in ur town.but im tellin you qualitest pills are junk they fill empty have no strengh and just make u tired and burntout.the blue with the v on it.junk and walgreens and cvs carry it.

Kapri 30 Nov 2013

Well I did contact WestWard and they said they aren't discontinued but that can't release them due to a legal matter but they said they should be getting released soon not certain of a date but to keep checking. Also s new problem the Watson brand which are name brand having the same problem smh and its only the white ones by Qualitest around that absolutley DONT WORK!!

kisses08 2 Aug 2015

I just want to let u know walgreens carry them ... just ask for then they have them

kisses08 2 Aug 2015

I just want to let u know walgreens carry them ... just ask for then they have them

kaneary 22 Oct 2012

Yes, in my opinion, it is and here is why. While all generic medications have the exact same active ingredients as their name-branded counterparts, the stabilizers and other inactive ingredients they use can be very different; it is these ingredients that result in a different metabolism of the drug itself. Of course, metabolism also depends on people (i.e. if you have Crohn's disease or other digestive difficulties and are taking a drug that now metabolizes in your gut rather than your kidneys, this will certainly affect the process).


After taking the Westward (blue) generics of Fioricet for many years, I was also switched to the Watson (white) pills. Even doubling the dosage did not compare to the Westwards for me. I've physically gone into my pharmacy to request the Westwards, but was told my doc needed to make the request. If you let your doctor know that the new generic version "does not metabolize the same" as what you've had previously, they will switch. If you have Kaiser, they do honor this request and won't charge more. Good luck!

Votes: +0
Kapri 23 Dec 2013

Hi kaneary, for some reason I can't read your last post about taking a capsule of fioricet, would you mind sharing with me what you said

kaneary 14 May 2014

OK, so I just had another discussion with Actavis Pharmaceuticals and they confirmed that although there are no sulfates in their generic "Watson" version, they do manufacture these generic tablets in the same facility/equipment with other sulfate-laden medications and they DO NOT test for sulfate cross contamination, so this is probably why these generics do not metabolize effectively like others. Many people have sulfate allergies and/or sensitivities so are rapid metabolizers of sulfates and can not digest any products containing even the slightest hint of them (hence those rumblies after so many foods!!! ) - this is why they are also a migraine trigger!! I explained this was EXTREMELY counter-intuitive (and stupid) for them to put such an ingredient in the "new" Fioricet capsules... wow, such idiots.


So, now that Westward has also discontinued their [awesome] generics, I've just found out that Kaiser also has a generic by Lannett which is a speckled blue round pill with an imprint of "1695"... has anyone tried these?? I have recently tried Qualitest's and though I'm ok with those (not thrilled), I do notice a slight rebound headache. Ingredients seem to be on par with original Fioricet (at least on paper) however they don't seem to ramp up to alleviate as quickly and then they are giving me a slight rebound headache... therefore my quest continues...

cjo4mit 2 Aug 2018

I have used both blue and white pills or blue caps. I prefer the caps, but hard to get. The white pill no where comes close to taking care of my headache. Instead of 2 times a day, the doctor had to make it take one white pill, then if it isn't helping, I can take another 2 hours after the 1st one. No way to count on them, and a waste of more of my money when I get white pills

amshope20 24 Oct 2020

What I'd the best out there? Just ruined two scripts. Helps ASAP.thx

seven124 29 June 2012

I used to take the blue westward 787, which seemed to actually do better than the other white one. I'm not sure why but that was what worked for me.

Votes: +0
Margi2012 30 June 2012

Thank you so much for taking the time to respond to my question. I posted this question because I normally get the westward 787, and when I picked up my refill, it was a white tablet, which I don't feel is working as well as the other. Thanks again.

lynnminer 31 July 2012

I have always taken the blue Westward 787 and trust me when I say that the white generics (Watson or Qualitest) do NOT work for me at all. The Westward are hard to find though. The last couple of pharmacies I spoke with said they are having a difficult time getting them from the Westward manufacture. =( I hope they don't quit making them!

tessie 787 25 June 2013

I agree and have wondered the same as you. Try Walmart. They were more
expensive, like $27, not under my insurance. The Watson ones were
about $10, not insured.

I have seen the same results as you. Not sure what is the added actual ingredient, I am not a chemistry major. But, the body tells the truth.

I want to go back to the blue 787 ones too. I found one in a spare bottle for travel, lucky me!!! I am so tired of complex migraines that are affecting the small vessels in my brain, even though I eat well. Makes no sense!!! I
took less of the 787 ones, much more effective!

When I think I am done with migraines, here we go again!!! I just got done seeing a Neurologist who put me one Topamax that gave me hives and attacked the vascular system. Isn't that cool?

Migraines are_________! My blood vessels are changing are so is my neurological output, neuropathy. The docs won't give me much since complex migraines go into stroke like symptoms. Joy!

Hope for the best to you all!!!

winky551 3 March 2018

I TOTALLY AGREE, Had always had blue and they gave me white from local pharmacy as had a script and those things were worse than simply drinking water! free discount card

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fioricet, headache, generic

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