Although all of the patents have expired, no manufacturers have chosen to make generic Nitro-Bid (nitroglycerin ointment). There is not a large market for this medication, so it may not be financially profitable for a manufacturer to make a generic version. Although nitroglycerin ointment is the generic name for Nitro-Bid, it is not a generic version of the drug.
Can I Buy Generic Nitro-Bid?Nitro-Bid® (nitroglycerin ointment) is a prescription skin ointment used to treat chest pain (angina). Specifically, it is typically used twice a day to help prevent attacks of angina. It is also frequently used "off-label" (in an unapproved manner) to treat anal fissures (a different nitroglycerin ointment, Rectiv™, is approved for anal fissure treatment).
Nitro-Bid is made by Savage Laboratories. It is not available in generic form.
When Will a Generic Version Be Available?This is a difficult question to answer. Usually, when a brand-name drug is not available in generic form, it means that patents protect the drug from generic competition. However, there are no unexpired patents for Nitro-Bid.
Legally, there appears to be nothing preventing generic manufacturers from making this medication. Perhaps, it is not financially beneficial for them to do so, given the relatively small market for this medication. At this point, there is no way to accurately predict when, or even if, generic Nitro-Bid might become available.
Is Nitroglycerin Ointment a Generic Nitro-Bid?No -- nitroglycerin ointment is the active ingredient in Nitro-Bid, but it is not a generic version of it. What can be confusing is that the active ingredient of a drug is often referred to as the "generic name."
The generic name is different from a generic version of a medicine. In order for there to be a generic version, the original medicine must have gone off-patent and another company besides the original manufacturer must make the product.
Nitro-Bid comes in one strength (2%). If your healthcare provider writes a prescription for a lower strength, your pharmacy will most likely use Nitro-Bid to make your ointment and then dilute it to the lower strength. This is not a "true" generic, but is a "compounded" prescription. This distinction is important for insurance purposes.