Mallinckrodt - a poor manufacturer?

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Bonnie's picture
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Hi, I'm new to  In my wanderings around the site I noticed quite a lot of comments (mostly negative) about Mallinckrodt.  I was wondering if there are consistent problems with their products?  I do not work for Mallinckrodt, but in the effort to be a well informed consumer, I'd like to know if it is a company to steer clear of if given the choice.

phisher's picture
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Hello and welcome to the site!

Good question re Mallinckrodt.

Mallinckrodt is one of the worlds largest manufactures. Additionally, they are also one of the cheapest (cost wise) manufactures out which is why they are so popular (as well as the fact that they offer such a wide range of drugs).

Personally, i have mixed feelings about their products, and i have noticed that some of their generics seem better than other generics of theirs.

Because of their affordableness and availability, i would recommend that no one write them off before they have given them a chance but yes you are correct that the general consensus (especially on their pain medicines like; hydrocodone, oxycodone, darvon, et cetera) is that they are not as good.


all thoughts and opinions expressed are those of my own and should not be mistaken for medical advice. i am not a doctor nor a pharmacist. all medical questions should be answered by a licensed pharmacist, doctor, or primary care manager.
MUDBONE's picture
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My $.02

Everyone has an opinion, but as far as meds go, they affect different people in different ways. What one person may say is lousy, another may think its the best. Dont just write them off without trying for yourself. You may be one that really likes them as apposed to other manufacturers.


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I would agree Bonnie!  I have found the MS contins that mallinkrodt make to be fine. However, I have had some endos and they were OK. But for me the watson brand  just plain x*#&s. Just gotta try them all. What particular med are you referring to....if I may ask???

User offline. Last seen 10 years 48 weeks ago. Offline
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Generic Drugs by Mallinkkrodt

I am a cancer patient who was originally prescribed pain medication made by Roxane, considered to be a good company.

However, Walgreens, one of the biggest & most popular pharmacies in America today, has given up my pain medication by Roxane, and switched to a new generic company which just happens to be Mallinckrodt.  There is, in my opinion, a huge difference between the same drug made by the two companies.  Roxane is far superior and as far as Mallinckrodt goes, they are so bad that I have now chosen to leave Walgreens over this change.  When you have to double or triple your usual dose of the same drug by a different manufacturer, I think that speaks Bonnie, here is just one opinion about mallinckrodt generics.  I'm not even sure it deserves a rating at all.  The pills are hard to swallow when you have throat cancer especially...and when you have to take18 to 24 pills instead of the usual 8 per day, as prescribed, YES, I think I would say there is a problem with this company.  I'll grant them one point for being the cheapest on the market, but that doesn't matter if they don't work.  I am more shocked that a company with Walgreens reputation would stoop this low.  If anyone out there has a positive comment, please speak up! 

Bonnie's picture
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Mallinkrodt Opioid - Weird thing happpened today!!!

Hi ! I have been off line for a while (I tend to go through waves on the computer - sorry! But to answer/update, I am prescribed 10mg tabs of Oxycodone and my pharmacy fills my Rx with Mallinkrodt. I get the feeling it just is not working as well as it should. I was thinking of swtching pharmacies to see if another brand might be better. I spoke to my Doc because I thought maybe tolerance might be an issue.

All this pales in comparison to what happened today. My Rx is for a LOT of tabs. I have AS and am in considerable pain at times. Anyway, I'm used to the small round white scored tab with an M surrounded with a box, and a scored back with the numbers 05/52. Well in the Rx I had filled on the 23rd, I just noticed SOME of the tabs looked a little different. Still an M, but no box. Also a little broader diameter, and, well, very slightly faceted. They are a little thinner - almost wafer like, and the back has a 10 but not really scored, but rather a line or hash mark in the north south orientatiion (not sufficient to brake the tab). But the tabs look VERY similar - most people - especially those in pain or the elderly would not have seen the difference, but I really noticed.

While I know that sometimes in large RXs they will run out of one brand and supplement with another - I got a weird vibe with this. I Did Not take any of the unfamiliar tabs. I just called my pharmacist (a good one) and he was alarmed (he does not do the pill counting, the assistant does that). From my verbal description he thought it might be Methylphenidate. How does Methyphenidate get mixed into an opiate Rx!! I'm sending him the mysterious tabs ASAP as the pharmacy is quite out of the way for me and I cannot drop by that easily. But I'm rethinking the pharmacy and the method of dispensing. Does anybody out there know if medicines can be dispensed Factory Sealed to remove "human error". I think this is super important with these types of drugs.

I just called my Pain doc to give him the heads up. The pharmacy is in the same building, and a lot of his patients get their meds there. I can just imagine my doc getting a lot of calls over the weekend from patients having really weird symptoms..and of course there is no way my doc could possibly know why his patients were freaking out!!

I go out of my way to be super dilligent with my opiates. NEVER mailorder - always check the RX before I leave the pharmacy...all the squeeky clean stuff. It just goes to show that even a super A++ patient can get into trouble with these meds!

This is SCARY!!!!

Any hints on making my Rxs safer would be appreciated. You can email me directly.( I think my email is on the pharmer system, but I'm new to all this and a little mystified as to how things work)

Director's picture
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Let me guess!

Let me guess which drug you're talking about, since you didn't come out and say in your post.  My guess would be: Methadone!  I went through the same thing, only the opposite way around.  My pharmacy (a big chain pharmacy, not a Mom & Pop) were dispensing Methadose by Mallinckrodt when I started on Methadone over four years ago.  I too, take a large number of pills a day.  I'M on 180 mg per day.  I told the head pharmacist that I wouldn'y fill my scripts there unless they would order my Methadone by Roxane.  They did and every month I go in and fill my script for 540 Methadone tabs.

I've heard similar stories about Walgreen's and I have one close to my house, but I wouldn't go there to fill any of my scripts.  Rite Aid is in the same boat and they're right across the street from Walgreen's.  ginjeff, I hope you're getting the Roxane medications you want.  I would really like to hear how things are going since you posted back in April. 


a t a x i a
a t a x i a's picture
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I have heard few complaints from patients

However, you don't necessarily need to switch pharmacies if you enjoy the service you receive. Just ask them if there is a possibility that they can special order a different manufacturer [Teva comes to mind, though I've heard some complaints of anaphylaxis due to the potassium content in the binders/fillers for a small, select few] of your medication, but of course there are many manufacturers available. Often times, a pharmacy will accommodate a patient, especially if you reassure the staff that you will continue to come in so long as they order the brand that works for you. At any rate, it's worth a try and likely easier than exploring multiple pharmacies to see what they are carrying [as well as, pharmacies may change their preffered manufacturer due to warehouse changes].


[n o t h i n g : e v e r y t h i n g : : r e a l i t y]

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Bonnie,Im going to try and

Bonnie,Im going to try and answer a few of your questions and try to clear up any confusions.

M 0552 is not 10mg Oxycodone it is 5mg Oxycodone, this could be why they arent working as well as what you used to get.

Its weird that your pharmacist said he doesnt count the pills, Oxycodone is a CII and the pharmacist is required to be the one to handle all CII medications, usually techs can only handle CIII and below.

Some pharmacies will indeed give you sealed factory bottles of medications, Ive never asked for them but I have received them. I do think however that the Pharmacists are actually required to count them out and put them in a new bottle on the bottles Ive received it said "DO NOT DISPENSE IN THIS CONTAINER". If you ask they will probably give you sealed bottles though. Just so you know most factory bottles come in quanties of 100,500 and 1000. There are exceptions and inbetweens just not with Oxycodone tablets from any manufacturer that Im aware of.

Methyphenidate 10mg is indeed the tablets that where mixed with your

Oxycodone 5mg Tablets

Courtesy of

Also, ATAXIA Teva only makes generic Oxycodone Extended Release tablets so thats not an option. And most people say Teva is a bad generic just like Mallinckrodt anyways.


gcdylan's picture
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Well Bonnie,there has been quite a few comments in here that Mallinckrodt has made inferior products. For myself I have only been on one narcotic  that was Mallinckrodt,that being Oxycodone 30 mg IR. Although now the phamacy I still use had that brand for a few months then switched to Amide generic. I myself could feel no difference, in other words they worked for me as well as the other 2 brands the other being Ethex. But the amount of people complaining about Mallinckrodt is numerous so I would have to have questions regarding this brand.I myself will no longer accept Mallinckrodt for the 30 mg oxycodone for this reason alone. I call up or when I drop by the phamacy the 1st question is what brand name they have for that medication.

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First off, most Roxane

First off, most Roxane products are brand name. These would include roxicodone 5, 15 and 30mg oxycodone IR tablets. There is also roxicodone 5mg/5ml oxycodone solution. Then you have Roxicet 5/325, Roxicet 5/500 and Roxidone 4.88/325 tablets, (I might be mistaken and it might be Roxinol, i cant remember) which are equivalents to percocet, tylox and percodan. It may be that your insurance would no longer pay for the roxane version, as in most cases, it is considered a brand name drug. This is especially true with the roxicodone products as roxane (also known as xanodyne pharm.) was the original producer of 5, 15 and 30mg oxycodone IR. True, that there is also OxyIR by perdue (originally in a capsule, 5mg strength only) and Percolone, by endo/dupont phamr which was the 5mg tablet. But roxane was definitely the original producer of 15 and 30mg oxycodone IR tablets. So most pharmacies consider roxane products brand name so if your ins. doesnt cover brand rx's when a cheaper (and in some cases less effective) generic is available.

As far a mallinckrodt goes, they seem to work just as well as other generics although I do prefer watson products, and with roxicodone, I prefer the amide generic.