Ask the Experts

Generic Concerta Is Not Created Equal

“I’ve been taking a generic form of Concerta, and it isn’t working as well as the brand-name formulation. What should I do?”

Generic Concerta

Many patients and physicians have noticed that  Concerta generic formulations are neither as effective nor as long-lasting as the original brand-name Concerta.

The FDA permits generic methylphenidate extended-release medications that come in the same dose sizes as brand-name Concerta to be dispensed like the brand-name medication. A number of manufacturers make generic versions of Concerta, including some that are not guaranteed to have the same osmotic-controlled release oral delivery system (OROS) as the original Concerta.

The only “authorized generic” is currently made by Patriot Pharmaceuticals,  a wholly-owned subsidiary of Janssen. The “authorized generic” made by Patriot Pharmaceuticals is the only Concerta generic to use OROS, Concerta’s patented extended-release technology.  The OROS delivery system takes the form of a rigid tablet with a semi-permeable outer membrane and one or more small laser-drilled holes in it.

If you find that your Concerta generic is not as effective as the brand-name product was, talk with your pharmacist and request the “authorized generic” Concerta made by Patriot Pharmaceuticals. However, know that not all pharmacies are willing to request a different generic than the one they normally dispense.  Gina Pera, an author, writer, and educator who has been following the generic Concerta issue in her blog, “The ADHD Roller Coaster,” writes that Walgreens is willing to order the “authorized generic” upon request while, in her experience, CVS has not been as amenable. Your local pharmacy may be an alternative.

Finally, if you are not able to obtain the “authorized generic” form of Concerta, you may consider paying the higher cost of the original branded Concerta or trying one of the many new methylphenidate medications on the market such as Daytrana, Jornay PM, Quillivant XR, Aptensio XR, and others.  See ADDitude’s Medication Reviews here.

For More Information on Concerta Generic and Other ADHD Medications:

Free Download: The Complete Guide to ADHD Medications
Name-Brand Prescriptions vs. Generic Drugs
Concerta

 

Updated on June 19, 2020

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