The generic name is the chemical name of a medicine. This name is the same no matter how many companies manufacture the medicine.
When a company makes a medicine, they give it a brand name (or trade name). A generic name medicine can be made by more than one company. And each company may have their own brand name for the same generic name medicine. So there can be more than one brand name for each generic name. Generic names and brand names of medicines are chemically the same. But generic name medicines are usually less expensive. A doctor may be able to prescribe a generic name medicine if it is available and appropriate.
Current as of: September 9, 2014
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review: E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Brian D. O'Brien, MD - Internal Medicine & Theresa O'Young, PharmD - Clinical Pharmacy
Public Health Alerts
Public health alerts include information about outbreaks, advisories and product recalls. Click on the links below to read the most recent alerts, or visit our Public Health Alerts web page.
Tell Us About Your Visit
FIND Services and Resources
If you are looking for health services in your community, you can use our directory to FIND hospitals, clinics, and other resources.
To learn more, visit Healthwise.org
© 1995-2014 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.
Is it an emergency?
If you or someone in your care has chest pains, difficulty breathing, or severe bleeding, it could be life-threatening. Call 9-1-1 or the local emergency number immediately. If you are concerned about a possible poisoning or exposure to a toxic substance, call Poison Control now at 1-800-567-8911.