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Q: Pharmaceutical names ( Answered,   3 Comments )
Subject: Pharmaceutical names
Category: Health > Medicine
Asked by: logro-ga
List Price: $3.00
Posted: 22 Sep 2005 08:31 PDT
Expires: 22 Oct 2005 08:31 PDT
Question ID: 570966
How do pharmaceutical drugs get their generic name? How do
pharmaceutical drugs get their brand name? Is there a system to naming
pharmacutical drugs? If there is a system, who determines it or how
was it started?
Subject: Re: Pharmaceutical names
Answered By: justaskscott-ga on 30 Sep 2005 12:42 PDT
Hello logro,

Here are several articles on the naming of pharmaceutical drugs, which
provide answers to your questions.

"Drug Name Confusion: Preventing Medication Errors" (FDA Consumer magazine
July-August 2005 Issue)
U.S. Food and Drug Administration

"Viagra: Rhymes With Niagara," by Karen Pallarito (27-JAN-2004)
Health on the Net Foundation

"The Science of Naming Drugs (Sorry, 'Z' Is Already Taken)," by Donald
G. McNeil, Jr. (The New York Times, December 27, 2003)

"Naming, Labeling, and Packaging of Pharmaceuticals" (from American
Journal of Health-System Pharmacy, 2001)
"Naming a Drug"
"Human Factors Evaluation During Brand-name Development"

"The Complex Process of Naming Drugs," by Linda Gundersen (15 October 1998) 
Annals of Internal Medicine

- justaskscott

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naming prescription generic drugs
Subject: Re: Pharmaceutical names
From: baz2121-ga on 25 Sep 2005 03:46 PDT

Generic drug names are usually named after the name of the active
chemical/substance within the drug. The commercial/brand name is
virtually named the same way but tends to have a twist on that name or
a made-up name that sounds good and "marketable".

Eg: Panadol (brand name) where the active ingredient is paracetamol.
    Duramine (brand name) where the active ingredient is phentermine. 
    Sudafed (brand name) where the active ingredient is pseudoephidrine. 

These names are conjured up by the drug companies. There are
regulations in some countries, like in Australia, the drugs
generic/brand name must be somewhat indicative of the active
ingredient. But generally, its up to the company to market the drug
how they wish, and its their PR people that decide that.
Subject: Re: Pharmaceutical names
From: welte-ga on 29 Sep 2005 19:57 PDT
Interestingly, pharmaceutical companies seem to now be leaning towards
choosing nearly unpronouncable generic names, making the brand name
more memorable.

Subject: Re: Pharmaceutical names
From: myoarin-ga on 30 Sep 2005 04:58 PDT
They are probably running out of names that can be pronounced.
I once heard that the companies put some effort into finding/inventing
names and then checking that they are unique enough and that in some
foreign language the name does not suggest something inappropriate. 
They may even trademark names to reserve them for future use.

WHen did it start?  Maybe with Bayer's Asperin.

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