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Vertigo after generic switch


A week ago I switched from brand name Glivec to Apo Imatinib generic. I had been on glivec for 8 years with relatively low to no side effects but a change in insurance benefits resulted in the need to switch.

Since switching I have had awful vertigo, it’s worse during physical exertion but even continues sometimes when sitting, to the point I don’t feel comfortable driving.

Curious if anyone else has had these symptoms? Or if there are other generic branded imatinib providers you have found that might be better than this Apotex? Would love a suggestion of a brand to ask my pharmacist for.

I’m 40 and a mother of 2 and definitely don’t want to be dealing with ongoing vertigo!

I remember feeling Vertigo and searching for it on the forum. I did go through a period when it would come on suddenly. I don't know what caused it, but I have not felt it for some time. Like I said, it would come on suddenly, then I would get an adrenaline rush trying to figure out what was going on, and pray. It would go away in a few seconds and I would go walk and take some water. Make sure your labs are good and check for any lacking vitamins and minerals. I would not keep taking the same TKI if this is not a sudden thing and is consistent.

This has not been an issue for me over 17 years on imatinib. I changed from Novartis branded Glivec to generics a fairly long time ago, over the years and not had any significant differences with any of the generics I have had from the pharmacy. Sandoz is the generic brand name for drugs made by Novartis, and is what I have been getting for the last few years. From various discussions on the forum over the years I have the impression (perhaps unsurprisingly) that people have had fewer additional side effects from Sandoz imatinib than any of the others. I hope that helps.

Thanks all for your input. My hematologist is having me switch generic brands right away rather than waiting it out, so at least she took the vertigo concern seriously. I will be starting Accord later today and hopefully it works better. If not, I will keep Sandoz in mind as my next option.

From what I’m gathering, most are able to switch to generic fairly easily it’s just a matter of finding the right one.

Like Alistair I would suggest that you try to use Sandoz as a generic-made by Novartis who produce the branded Glivec .The name comes from the former Pharma company Sandoz that merged with Ceiba- Geigy to form Novartis.
My haematologist who is highly experienced said always go for Sandoz and very important try not to switch from one generic to another every three month period or similar.
I am not a pharmacist but I have read that there is a difference in formulations between the original branded Glivec and the generics-one is an alpha formulation the other a beta formulation.
Best wishes
P.S I started Glivec in mid February 2007 and then when forced to do so went on to a generic but fortunately have only ever used Sandoz