Top 10 Medicines in the USA
We compiled a guide to the most popular medications: the list includes the sales leaders in the United States – the main pharmaceutical market in the world.
- Cholesterol-lowering agent
- Average price: $184 for a supply of 30 tablets
- International name: Atorvastatin
Lowering the level of cholesterol in the blood is almost the main national idea of America. Unsurprisingly, this top-selling drug in the US (and the world) aims to achieve this goal. In general, this is correct: high cholesterol is deposited on the walls of blood vessels, forms atherosclerotic plaques and leads to atherosclerosis, which causes up to 40% of deaths. Accordingly, the market volumes are impressive.
Lipitor (atorvastatin) is a statin. This drug reduces the activity of an enzyme that is involved in the synthesis of cholesterol in liver cells. Statins were discovered in the early 70s by Akira Endo of Japan, who was looking for new antibiotics. For his discovery, Endo did not receive a dime: all the money went to corporations like Merck and Pfizer, which each developed their own synthetic statin.
- Heartburn remedy
- Average price: $297 for a supply of 30 capsules
- International name: Esomeprazole
The active ingredient, esomeprazole, blocks the so-called proton pumps, which create an acidic environment in the stomach. This reduces the risk of acid entering the esophagus (such ingestion leads to heartburn) and ulcers gradually heal.
AstraZeneca originally launched the drug omeprazole. It was initially marketed under the Losec brand, but the FDA required the company to change its name to avoid confusion with the diuretic Lasix. AstraZeneca renamed omeprazole to Prilosec, but even then it got into trouble: because of poor medical handwriting, pharmacies began to confuse it with Prozac. While the point is yes, the dispute has lost its relevance: the term of the AstraZeneca patent has come to an end, and analogues of other manufacturers have appeared on the market. What happened next is one of the classic examples of corporate struggles to extend drug monopoly. AstraZeneca launched Nexium, aka esomeprazole, which is chemically the same omeprazole, but only presented in the form of only one optical isomer. Optical isomers are identical molecules that are mirror images of each other. Omeprazole included both “left” and “right” molecules, and esomeprazole – only “left”. AstraZeneca has proven that they have medicinal properties, and therefore a new patent was issued to it, now only for this form.
Nexium medication is quite expensive and some people even have to apply for fast cash Lebanon to afford it. Since this medicine is vital, Americans search for easy ways to purchase it. A payday loan (or cash advance) is the easiest way to raise money when you need it urgently. Such loans are easy to access ad can be used for whatever purpose. Loan amounts typically range from $100 to $1,000 and you will have to repay the debt within 1-4 weeks.
- Heartburn remedy
- Average price: $442 for a supply of 30 tablets
- International name: Lansoprazole
Heartburn turns out to be a very serious problem for the ever-nervous Americans. The mechanism of action and chemical structure of Prevacid is very similar to Nexium. Prevacid is slightly less effective, but it is better adapted for use simultaneously with other drugs.
4. Advair Diskus
- Anti-asthma remedy
- Average price: $168 for a supply of 14 powder
- International name: Salmeterol + Fluticasone
Advair is the best-selling anti-asthma drug on the American market. Advair is a combination of two long-known substances for inhalation in powder form: fluticasone and salmeterol. On the other hand, the form of their packaging – a small streamlined device of an incomprehensible in the form of purpose – is, probably, the most consistent expression of the manufacturers’ desire to make treatment not only convenient, but also pleasant. The powder is packed in doses between two foil strips and, like a piston, is charged into a special inhaler. Before each use, you need to cock the lever, which pierces one dose, and then inhale the powder through the nozzle. Each tape contains 60 doses, so one charge for an asthmatic person is enough for a month.
- Antiallergenic agent
- Average price: $8.26 per unit
- International name: Montelukast
Singulair is intended to combat allergy symptoms, as well as to prevent asthma. It acts according to a new mechanism, different from both steroids and antihistamines. Montelukast binds to leukotriene receptors, signaling molecules involved in inflammatory and allergic responses. As a result, the leukotriene signaling system stops working and the patient gets better.
6. Effexor XR
- Average price: $17.08 per unit
- International name: Venlafaxine
The title of the main antidepressant in the most preoccupied with mental health country in the world is a guarantee of getting into the annals of not only medicine but also pop culture, especially since most of the figures of this pop culture use antidepressants. Prozac, which reigned in this area since the late 1980s, was replaced by the drug Effexor, aka venlafaxine.
The letters XR in the name indicate a delayed-release drug. After taking one tablet per day, the active substance enters the body gradually, which reduces unwanted effects and prolongs the therapeutic effect.
- Anti-clotting agent
- Average price: $160 for a supply of 15 tablets
- International name: Clopidogrel
Previously, Plavix ranked second after Lipitor, but in 2006 it became the target of a filibuster attack by the Canadian drug manufacturer Apotex. It all started in early spring: Apotex said it considers the patent of Bristol-Myers Squibb and its partner Sanofi-Aventis invalid and is going to start selling the unbranded clopidogrel immediately. The owners of the patent sued, but then an amicable agreement was reached: Apotex received $40 million in compensation and the right to start selling an analogue eight months ahead of the patent expiration date in 2011, but for this it abandons its plans to immediately cancel the patent. This would have ended the case, but the antimonopoly committee did not approve the deal. Then it turned out that the cunning Canadians had included so many clauses in the contract that now they could start selling their drug without fear of very large fines. During the month, while the patent holders were running around the courts, they managed to ship so much cheap medicine that they almost halved the performance of the original Plavix.
- Cholesterol lowering agent
- Average price: $154 for a supply of 30 tablets
- International name: Simvastatin
Zokor is a drug from the same class of statins as Lipitor and lowers cholesterol levels by the same mechanism.
Zokor was the first statin widely used in medicine, but now its best days are behind and sales are declining. Merck introduced it to the market several years earlier than Pfizer, a lipitor, so its patent expired in 2006. Immediately, a huge number of analog drugs appeared, but Merck took an unusual step and reduced the price of Zocor to the level of new drugs. It turned out that the brand holder produced a cheap analogue, leaving competitors with nothing.
- Pressure reducing agent
- Average price: $94 for a supply of 30 tablets
- International name: Amlodipine
Norvasc is the most modern member of the dihydropyridine family used in cardiology since the 70s. These medicines are used to treat high blood pressure and coronary artery disease. They block calcium pumps in cells, dilating blood vessels and thereby reducing resistance to blood flow. The active principle of Norvasc, amlodipine, is remarkable in that it is 80 times more effective on blood vessels than on heart tissue, and due to this, it almost does not cause a weakening of the activity of the heart muscle.
Norwegian company Pfizer will lose its monopoly in September 2007 and is preparing for this event with a certain ingenuity. They have already started selling the drug Caduet, which is a combination of two of her hit drugs for the heart – Lipitor and Norvasca. Since together they form a new tool, it is also subject to new patent protection.
- Average price: $104 for a supply of 30 tablets
- International name: Escitalopram
The history of escitalopram began in 1989 with the advent of the drug citalopram. This antidepressant was a great success and generated huge revenue for its manufacturer, Forest Laboratories. In 2003, the patent expired – and the story with the Nexium repeated: the company developed and patented escitalopram, which is actually one of the two optical isomers of citalopram.
Tags: drugs, medication, medicine, pharmacology, treatment