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.
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XOLAIR (omalizumab) for subcutaneous use is an injectable, prescription medicine for patients ages 12 and older. It is for patients with moderate-to-severe persistent allergic asthma caused by year-round allergens in the air. A skin or blood test is done to see if you have allergic asthma. XOLAIR is for patients who are not controlled by asthma medicines called inhaled steroids. XOLAIR helps reduce the number of asthma attacks in people with allergic asthma who still have asthma symptoms even though they are taking inhaled steroids.
XOLAIR is not a rescue medicine and should not be used to treat sudden asthma attacks. XOLAIR is not a substitute for the medicines you are already taking. Do not change or stop taking any of your other asthma medicines unless your doctor tells you to do so. You may not see an immediate improvement in your asthma when beginning XOLAIR therapy.