What is a Generic Drug?

A generic drug is a copy of the brand-name drug with the same dosage, safety, strength, quality, consumption method, performance, and intended use. Before generics become available on the market, the generic company must prove it has the same active ingredients as the brand-name drug and works in the same way and in the same amount of time in the body.

The only differences between generics and their brand-name counterparts is that generics are less expensive and may look slightly different (eg. different shape or color), as trademarks laws prevent a generic from looking exactly like the brand-name drug.

Generics are less expensive because generic manufacturers don't have to invest large sums of money to develop a drug. When the brand-name patent expires, generic companies can manufacture a copy of the brand-name and sell it at a substantial discount.

Depen (Penicillamine)


Depen (Penicillamine)

Prescription Required


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  • Product Details


    Depen is a prescription medication and chelating agent that removes certain toxic substances from the body. It can be prescribed to treat:

    • Cysteinura: abnormally high cysteine in the urine
    • Lead poisoning
    • Wilson disease: abnormally high copper in the body

    Depen works by attaching to the substance, and the compound is then excreted in the urine.

    Fact Table




    US FDA



    Legal status


    Chemical Name


    Elimination half-life

    1 hour

    Dosage (Strength)



    Not Recommended



    Protein binding


    PubChem CID






    ATC code






    Routes of administration

    By mouth


    Take Depen exactly as prescribed by your doctor. The dosage ranges from 250 mg to 4000 mg per day and is divided into one to four doses.

    Take the Depen (penicillamine) dosage on an empty stomach one hour before and two hours after meals.


    The active ingredient in Depen is penicillamine.


    Drug interactions with this medication may include:

    • Digoxin
    • Gold sodium thiomalate
    • Polyvalent cation containing products


    Depen should only be used under the close supervision of a physician experienced in using it because it has many potential side effects and toxicities.

    Quickly report any fever, sore throat, chills, bruising, or bleeding to your doctor if you experience them while taking this medication.

    You may need to take pyridoxine (vitamin B6) while taking this medication.

    Older adults are more susceptible to taste alterations and skin rash while taking this medication.

    Tell your doctor if you have a history of kidney problems.

    Side Effects

    Depen has many possible side effects, including:

    • Agitation
    • Alopecia
    • Amprexoa
    • Anxiety
    • Arthralgia
    • Asthma
    • Blood cell abnormalities
    • Cheilosis
    • Diarrhea
    • Dysgeusia
    • Dystonia
    • Epigastric pain
    • Exfoliative dermatitis
    • Fever
    • Fragile skin
    • Glossitis
    • Guillain-Barre syndrome
    • Hyperpyrexia
    • Hypoglycemia
    • Increase lactate dehydrogenase
    • Leukopenia
    • Lichen planus
    • Local thrombophlebitis
    • Myasthenia
    • Myasthenia gravis
    • Nausea
    • Neurological deterioration
    • Neuropathy
    • Oral mucosa ulcer
    • Pancreatitis
    • Papule
    • Pemphigus
    • Peptic ulcer
    • Proteinuria
    • Pruritus
    • Psychiatric disturbance
    • Renal failure
    • Skin atrophy
    • Skin rash
    • Stomatitis
    • Thrombocytopenia
    • Thyroiditis
    • Tinnitus
    • Toxic epidermal necrolysis
    • Urticaria
    • Vasculitis
    • Vomiting
    • Wrinkling of skin
    • Yellow nail syndrome


    1. Depen [package insert]. Somerset, NJ: Meda; 2019.

    Frequently Asked Questions about Depen (Penicillamine)

    What is Depen (Penicillamine) medication used for?

    Depen is primarily used to treat Wilson's disease, a rare genetic disorder that causes copper buildup in the body.

    How does Depen work?

    Depen works by binding to copper and promoting its excretion from the body through urine.

    What are the common side effects of Depen?

    Common side effects may include skin rashes, gastrointestinal disturbances, and loss of taste or smell.

    How is Depen usually administered?

    Depen is typically taken orally in the form of capsules or tablets.

    Can I take Depen with food?

    It is generally recommended to take Depen on an empty stomach, at least one hour before or two hours after meals.

    Are there any dietary restrictions while on Depen?

    A low-copper diet is often recommended alongside Depen treatment to manage Wilson's disease.

    How long is Depen treatment typically required?

    Treatment with Depen for Wilson's disease is usually long-term and may continue for life.

    Can I drink alcohol while taking Depen?

    It is advisable to avoid alcohol while on Depen, as it can interfere with the medication's effectiveness.

    Is Depen safe to use during pregnancy or breastfeeding?

    Depen should be used during pregnancy or breastfeeding only if the potential benefits outweigh the risks and under the guidance of a healthcare professional.

    What should I do if I miss a dose of Depen?

    If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. However, do not take two doses at once to make up for the missed one, and follow your healthcare provider's instructions.

    IMPORTANT NOTE: The above information is intended to increase awareness of health information and does not suggest treatment or diagnosis. This information is not a substitute for individual medical attention and should not be construed to indicate that use of the drug is safe, appropriate, or effective for you. See your health care professional for medical advice and treatment.

    Product Code : 1456

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