Galena Biopharma, Inc. recently launched a new medication called Zuplenz to prevent nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy and radiation. It is also indicated to prevent post-operative nausea and vomiting. Many patients feel nauseous after surgery due to the effects of anesthesia and other drugs, and the muscle strain involved in vomiting can cause serious damage after certain surgeries are performed. The active ingredient in Zuplenz that treats nausea is called ondansetron.
Zuplenz is different because it comes in the form of an orally soluble film strip with a minty flavor, not unlike the Listerine breath strips that melt in your mouth. That, however, is the only difference between Galena’s new Zuplenz, a similar brand called Zofran, and the generic drug ondansetron -- that and the price. Zuplenz film strips can cost over $100 for five of the 8mg film strips while generic ondansetron pills cost $100 or less for 30 pills containing the same dose.
Unless your nausea is so severe that you can’t keep a tiny bit of water down to swallow a pill, generic ondansetron pills are a much better deal. Furthermore, generic ondansetron also comes in the form of orally disintegrating tablets, basically the same thing as a soluble film strip. So if you can’t keep pills down, there is also a generic option available. These generic orally disintegrating tablets cost around $50 for 10 tablets. This is still a better deal than Zuplenz and serves the same purpose.
Zuplenz, Zofran and the generic version all contain the same active ingredient, ondansetron. Ondansetron targets specific types of serotonin receptors and blocks the effects of chemotherapy drugs and other agents from activating a vomiting reflex, which is why medications that contain ondansetron have been the go-to drugs for treating chemotherapy-based nausea for years.
Zuplenz film strips, Zofran disintegrating tablets and generic ondansetron disintegrating tablets all come in doses of either 4mg or 8mg. Generic ondansetron pills are available in a large dose of 24 mg each in addition to the standard 4mg or 8mg doses.
So, if your nausea is severe and your insurance is paying for the fresh minty taste of Zuplenz or the Zofran brand name, you’ve got nothing to lose. However, if you have to pay for most of your medication out of pocket and your doctor prescribes Zofran or Zuplenz, ask him or her to prescribe generic ondansetron instead. You’ll get more for your money.
Don’t forget to add our ondansetron discount coupon when you fill your prescription and pay as little as $20 for 30 tablets.