'ER' (aka XR) stands for extended release, Cricket. Both have the same active chemical, but in the ER version it is encapsulated in fillers that release it progressively over about 24 hours, instead of all at once.
Standard alprazolam (Xanax) is a short-acting medication which needs to be taken about every 4-6 hours. The ER/XR formulations usually only need to be taken once per day. Extending the release also gives a more continuous dose which helps those that experience a yo-yo effect as standard alprazolam kicks in and out.
Thank you, Ian, for the clear description of the differences. ER was prescribed to me by error and I wanted to know the ramifications IF I hadn't discovered it before accepting the prescription. The difference in the price $324 vs $17 for a 90 day supply is what gave it away.
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