Thyroid UK
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Excipients

The ingredients of medicines are often divided into active ingredients and excipients. Put simply, excipients are all the ingredients other than the active ingredient!

I love the word excipients.

We very often see use of the word filler - which is somewhat misleading. A filler is an excipient with a specific function - it adds bulk. Calling them all fillers is somewhat misleading. Other functions of excipients include:

Antiadherents

Binders

Coatings

Colours

Disintegrants

Flavors

Glidants

Lubricants

Preservatives

Sorbents

Sweeteners

Vehicles

Some excipients have multiple functions.

The word filler often seems to imply that the substance is being used instead of the active ingredient - to reduce the amount of active ingredient. But we'd better remember that some of these excipients are absolutely essential.

The article linked below might be of interest:

drugtopics.modernmedicine.c...

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Lol - I like the word excipient too - totally different connotation to "fillers" (said in gruff white van man voice) ;-)

I wonder what it is about some words that make you love them so or reel in disgust (banter = urrgghhh shiver).

Fillers or "excipients" are causing me so much grief at the mo as really struggling to find vitamins/supplements that don't have ingredients derived from gluten grains or artificial sugars - both of which really bother me making me pop up in itchy blisters - they either have maltodextrin, trocopherols, mannitol etc etc!!! Am at a complete loss and losing the will to live! :-)

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There is a brand named Pure Encapsulations, which might be what you're looking for. Haven't tried them myself though.

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Many thanks, will take a look :-)

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Actually they could work, look like they make them specifically for peeps like me - thanks. I've just ordered earlier today from another company but if I react to those, I'll try these next :-)

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Hope they work out for you. :-)

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Interesting! Thank you. One thing I often 'worry' about is the mixing. How do we manage to get the described amount of medication in every tablet and what happens if we cut a tablet into quarters for instance? I'm sure they are mixed well but it just makes me think-do we know what we are actually swallowing?

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Some years ago, we received advice from a manufacturer that a score line does NOT imply a tablet is splittable. Quite possibly, the doses in each part would be different. The split line is there to facilitate breaking for people who cannot swallow the whole tablet.

However, if you take, say 112.5 levothyroxine everyday, comprised of 100 plus half a 25, would it make any real difference if you took 110/115, 107/118, or whatever? Important things: don't lose any and don't bulk split.

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Well, I'm blowed. Very useful as I'm a splitting kinda gal.

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Well take NDT so I hope it's really well mixed!

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The percentage of a levothyroxine or liothyronine tablet that is active ingredient is tiny. About one thousandth of the tablet.

The percentage of a desiccated thyroid tablet that is active ingredient (where active ingredient is defined as Thyroid USP - dried thyroid powder) is considerable. I'd guess maybe 25 to 50%.

(If anyone has genuinely laboratory standard scales and could weigh a range of thyroid tablets of all sorts and dosages, I'd love to know their actual weights.)

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Pity I'm retired! But yes it would be interesting but I imagine frightening as well!

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Excipients...I never new that. Yes, sounds far more interesting and purposeful. Fillers makes me think of washing powder. Vehicle is quite awesome, too.

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Very interesting and important for folks to note that though excipients may be small in amount they can have adverse effects! I cannot tolerate acacia so I stick with Actavis tablets and split as necessary.

Thanks for posting

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Some excipients actually make the drug work better or increase the uptake. Some are there to stabilise the drug, and in liquid drugs help the drugs to not settle out. They can be a good thing.

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I never knew Glidant was a word...I'm overjoyed! Adding it to my list... :-)

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I agree, glidant is an interesting (but also disturbing) word. When I discovered that the purpose of a glidant is to make powders flow through machinery more smoothly, my first thought was "ewwww, I've been swallowing that". :D

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Must admit, I hadn't thought of it like that!

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I can see you have an eclectic list of books on your bedside table helvella! Interesting though.

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