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Numerous studies have shown senior citizens can save tremendous amounts of money by using generic drugs, even in the Medicare prescription drug program. The Food and Drug Administration today announced approvals for two generics that will be of interest to many older people. The first, Pravastatin, is a generic version of the cholesterol-lowering drug Pravachol. The second, Cilostazol, is a generic for Pletal, which is prescribed for those who get pain in the legs when walking.

The FDA said Pravastatin Sodium Tablets is the first generic version of Bristol-Myers Squibb’s Pravachol and described the action as “important step in the agency’s effort to increase the availability of lower-cost generic medications.”

Pravastatin is for the treatment of individuals with high cholesterol levels (hyperlipidemia) or who are at increased risk for atherosclerosis-related cardiac and cardiovascular events, such as heart attack and stroke in which high cholesterol levels are a factor.

In 2005, Pravachol was the 22nd highest-selling brand-name drug in the United States, with sales totaling $1.3 billion.

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