FDA Approves First Generic Version of Widely Used Influenza Drug Tamiflu
On August 3, 2016, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the first generic version of Tamiflu (oseltamivirphosphate), a widely used medication for the treatment of the flu (influenza A and B) in patients two weeks of age and older who have had flu symptoms for no more than 48 hours; and prevention of the flu in patients one year of age and older. Tamiflu was approved in 1999.
The FDA is committed to improving patient access to safe and effective generic drugs. Generic drugs approved by the FDA have the same high-quality and strength as brand-name drugs. The generic manufacturing and packaging sites must pass the same quality standards as those of brand-name drugs.
The most common side effects reported by people using oseltamivir phosphate in clinical trials included nausea and vomiting.
Patients must use oseltamivir phosphate as directed by their health care provider. Oseltamivir phosphate does not take the place of receiving a flu vaccination. Talk to your health care provider about when you should receive an annual flu vaccination.
Oseltamivir phosphate does not treat or prevent illness caused by infections other than the influenza virus, and oseltamivir phosphate does not prevent bacterial infections that may happen with the flu. The FDA does not know if oseltamivir phosphate is effective in people who start treatment after two days of developing symptoms, or have weakened immune systems.
Patients and health care providers may find more information on oseltamivir phosphate in the drug label.