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Duragesic Patches

iowarobiniiowarobin Posts: 1,268
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:27 AM in Pain Medications
I have a qestion to anyone who has used Fentyl patches. My pain Dr put me on Duragesic Patches a few months ago for pre fusion pain. When he put me on them he would not use any kind other than brand name Duragesic. He said based on his experience he woulodnt let me use any generic. My Surgeon upped the dosage but also put me on Duragesic as well with no generics. The cost to me is about 400 dollars a month. I am wondering if anyone can give me some insight as to other brands and how they worked. I am having a tough time paying so much more out of pocket, and thought I would see if anyone could tell me of reasons that these are superior or not.


  • IowaRobin-

    I do not know much about the cost or difference in brands of Duragesic patches, but I think that some have a resovour(sp) that holds the medicine while others have the medicine evenly distributed throughout the patch so some feel the delivery is not the same. This is a big "I think", cuz I'm not sure even though I was on them postop fusion.

    I really do not know but I believe that one of the mods, Paulgla, uses them and may be able to explain it. I think he did so in one of his posts. Maybe send him a PM????
  • I only use the Mylan brand generic patches, specifically because they use the matrix delivery system rather than the gel reservoir. As far as I know, Mylan is the only one that uses that delivery system. They work perfectly peachy for me.

    If you don't mind my asking, are you paying entirely out of pocket for the brand name patches?
  • No that is the difference between the genaric and the duragesic. The duragesic is like 733 for month and they only allow 333.

    I dont know what a matrix delivery system is? Also is it a brand name or genaric?
  • The matrix delivery system is only used by Mylan, which is a generic. With the matrix delivery, there's no gel reservoir; instead, there's a "release layer" and the drug is not in a liquid or gel form, so it's safe from leakage if the patch is cut or punctured.

    If I were in your situation, I'd have to fuss at the doctor and at least try the generic brands. Shelling out that much money when you have insurance is just horrible, especially when it's not based on your experience with the different generic brands.

  • I have always used generic patches and they have always been Watson, Mylan, or Sandoz. I prefer the Watson generic brand with the reservoir. I paid $248.00 for 10 patches (75 mcg). I realized that the higher the dosage, the more they charge- I once pain only $149.00 for 10 patches of the 25 mcg.
  • My insurance would only pay for generics, so I insisted my doctor let me have them. He finally agreed to allow them.
    I am no longer on them - could not stand the dopiness and I had memory loss with them. Weaned myself off them after surgery in Sept. 2007.

    And I ask my primary care doctor for free samples whenever I go. I usually get a couple weeks of Celebrex or Lyrica. The Ortho doctors are a little stingier with samples!
  • WoW!! That is a lot of money to be paying out of pocket every month. I have been using fentanyl patches for several years. In the beginning, my insurance paid for Duragesic so I got those but then it changed and we get generic unless the dr specifies "name brand only," and then we pay a lot towards it. I have used generic ever since and have had no problems. I also like the Mylan patches best as they seem to stay on the best, are smaller, and lay so flat against your skin. If it has become a financial hardship, talk to your doctor about it. He should at least be willing to let you try the generics, even if he only prescribes one box for you to try out.
    Fused L2-3 to S1 and at C5-6. I have a central herniation @ T11-12 and multiple bulging discs in my thoracic. I also have fibromyalgia and suspected arachnoiditis, awaiting my results of a recent MRI.
  • I am sorry to hear about your difficulties with pain and the financial burden it's caused.

    Have you tried contacting the maker of the duragesic patches? Sometimes, the pharmaceutical companies will help with the cost. I'm not sure how to go about it, but a phone call couldn't hurt? What's the worst that could happen? They'd tell you no. So, give it a try!

    Good luck, hun. Please keep us posted.

  • iowarobin said:
    I have a qestion to anyone who has used Fentyl patches. My pain Dr put me on Duragesic Patches a few months ago for pre fusion pain. When he put me on them he would not use any kind other than brand name Duragesic. He said based on his experience he woulodnt let me use any generic. My Surgeon upped the dosage but also put me on Duragesic as well with no generics. The cost to me is about 400 dollars a month. I am wondering if anyone can give me some insight as to other brands and how they worked. I am having a tough time paying so much more out of pocket, and thought I would see if anyone could tell me of reasons that these are superior or not.
    If you've been using Duragesic for over 6 months you're most likely going to have withdrawals if you go to the generic patches. Myself and many others who tried them noticed the difference immediately - After trying only 2 I had to go back to my original patches. When researching it, the problem appeared to only affect people like me who have been using Duragesic for many years (this is my 9th year of 100/200 mcg's depending on my pain level) and those who had been using it for over 6 months at lower dosages.

    As far as cost, what you may not know is that Duragesic has been including $50 coupons in each box since last year - you can also download them at the site. That covers my copayment, and unlike many my patch rotation is 48 hours and not 72 - I get 6 boxes of 100's per month. With those coupons, I only paid one copay last year.

    Still, 400 is a bit steep - even for me for 6 boxes it's only about 300. I'd do some checking around at different pharmacies to see if you're getting fleeced or not. Some places will charge you more because it's something they don't normally stock in quantity and have to order it for you each month. Just be sure you tell your doctor if you're going to switch pharmacies.

    The other problem I noticed with the generics is the strength level itself. Regardless of the type of delivery system, after initial onset and peak dosage effect, it shouldn't make any difference if the amount of Fentanyl is the same. To me at least, it was obvious it wasn't.

    Something many people don't realize about generics is that although they may be chemically equivalent, they are not always equivalent in material quality. Cost of producing the drug is being cut somewhere, and after 9 years of working as a government QA inspector, I can tell you that contractors always cut corners first in the quality of materials used to make a product. If you're like me and have been using something for many years (I've been using 100's for primary and Percocet 10/325's for breakthrough for 9 years, the same dosages with increase/decreases as needed) then you're more susceptible to changes in the materials being used - your body simply gets used to a certain substance at certain level and of a certain quality being in your system. People who haven't used it that long aren't affected that much because your body hasn't become that dependent yet.

    That's why there are only certain generics I'll use. But for my key drugs that are more important to my health, I only use brand name because I know that generics aren't the same. For those that want to argue, unless you've actually audited a contractor and know and understand the QA processes involved, then please don't bother as you'd just be spouting pharmaceutical and insurance company propaganda. If it works for you, great - I'm happy for you. But they're not the same when it comes to quality, and anyone who tells you different is full of it. Companies to not make the same product of the same quality and sell it at a lower price. There is always something in the manufacturing process that lowers the cost, whether it's location of manufacture(labor), materials, whatever.

    If you can keep affording it, stay with Duragesic - you're likely only going to wind up going through a hassle you don't want to go through, and I suspect your doctor already has experienced this with other patients or he would've given you the generic in the beginning. Don't forget to go to the site or look in your box for those $50 coupons.

    11th yr Pain Mgt | Duragesic 100mcg's | Percocet 10/325 (150/mo) | Demerol 100mg | MSContin 30mg | 3 spinal ops |
    Answers.com Pain/Pain Mgt Category Supervisor
  • Fentanyl patches. They've worked great from the get-go. I think the ones with the reservoir have given some folks heart attacks when they leaked. Google Fentanyl patch and you will find the stories. I decided to wean myself off my 75mcg patches on Monday of this week. Other than feeling a bit nauseated and shaky, I'm doing fine. I think I'm make it to being Fentanyl free. I still have some oxycodone for break through pain, but really haven't needed them much. Now if I could just move!


    3 level spinal fusion, L3/4, L4/5, L5/S1, November 2008. Stiff, but I can walk.
  • Can anyone tell me who makes the patch with the jell in it as it works much better for me. I am on 150mcg every 3 days. The last few times I have gotton them they don't have the jell in them and really do not work as well. I got the name brand last time made by PriCara and it is the same. Thanks for the help...
  • I am on 100/mcgh patches

    The box says RATIO-FENTANYL on it.

    Made by Ratiopharm Canada.

    I had an estimate prepared at Costco for these patches, and including dispensing, 5 patches is ~80 bucks. (Two week supply). They are roughly ~120 + dispensing fee at Shoppers Drug Mart.

    Also, I had them price out Percoset for me. I pay $12 for the dispensing fee at Shoppers. My insurance covers the additional ~20 or so for the medication.

    At Costco -- the pills, dispensing fee, paying CASH, with NO INSURANCE PLAN -- $13.

    THIRTEEN DOLLARS for the same drugs. I think the dispensing fee at Costco is about four bucks.

    So that's $8 for the same drugs that Shopper's drug mart is billing my insurance company over $20 for. The problem lies in the convenience factor. There is a Shoppers drug mart 2 minutes from my work, and one 5 minutes from my house, whereas Costco is a 30-40 minute drive from work or home.

    Kind of a catch 22, but I think that if you shop it around you might get a better price by just going to a Walgreens instead of CVS....not saying one is cheaper than other, because I don't live in the US, but as I said before, try shopping it around, you might be surprised. I know if I max out my drug plan at work or I end up losing coverage for any reason -- I'll be getting my scripts filled at Costco.
  • Hey, thanks for your reply. I only pay $3 for name brand and $1.10 for the others, so money is not the thing, I just wanted to know who makes the patches with the jell in them. Thanks so much.
  • Thanx Angry Hillbilly thanx for the heads up on the pricing for fentanyl at Costco. I went to Costco (avid Shoppers Drug Mart)for the first time to get a percocette refill and wondered if the pharmacist was on something (LOL). 100tabs for $14.00. Been on oxycotin for years and switching to fentanyl. Will post tomorrow and let you know.

    No insurance for me!

  • MetalneckMetalneck Island of Misfit toysPosts: 1,364
    Watson from Walgreens is still using the resavoir system at least at the 100mcg/hr dosage. My last batch was over $600 for the month #15 for every 2 day change .... they didn't work worth dooky for me.

    I much prefer the Sandoz "generic" brand that has the adhesive matrix ... but actually has a higher based amount of Fentynl than the mylans .... which don't do dooky for me .... after a brief stint back on MSContin .... my PM just switched me back to OXYcontin which I haven't been on for three years +

    I am RX 60mg 3 times a day .... and for the first time in a long time ... I am actually getting relief at 2 60mgs per day and most often don't need the third .... I am also just simply back to Norco (Hydrocodone) 10/325 for break through which again is minimal!! Hurrah!! EXCEPT .... Oxycontin with no generic available was over $800 for #90 as I have no insurance coverage. I feel like an opiate pain patient ping pong ball!! I have requested that CVS find out why they haven't been able to get the Sandoz patches .... they worked well and were only about $400 a month .... they request Sandoz for me .... but just still get in Mylan.

    Are we having fun yet??


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  • fyremakerffyremaker Posts: 1
    edited 11/20/2015 - 12:33 PM
    I have used both Duragesic and offbrand fentanyl patches. I can tell you that I very much prefer the Duragesic patches. The offbrand does not contain as much of the drug, this can be confirmed by checking the Duragesic box (for the 100 mcg/h dosage) at 16.8 mcg per patch and the offbrand only contained 10 point something (I no longer have the box to give the exact amount). Thus, the offbrand patch did not work anywhere near as well for me and wore off a full day less than what the Duragesic patch does. Furthermore, the duragesic patch does not travel as much along the skin, leaving a much smaller adhesive strip to rub off, and it actually rubs of easily. Whereas, the offbrand made a huge patch of adhesive and I had to rub it off using alcohol on a cotton ball or risk friction burns as occurred when I just tried to get it off with my finger as I do with the namebrand Duragesic patch. The Duragesic patch also stays on better and doesn't try to come off like the offbrand patch does. Also, sometimes the offbrand patch would stick to itself and then it just had to be thrown away, whereas when this has occurred with the Duragesic I was able to unstick it and use it without the waste.
  • SavageSavage United StatesPosts: 5,427
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