All about Compounded Medicines That You Must Know
There have been several concerns about compounded medicines, especially after some incidents have been reported where these medicines led to serious infections. However, this has also led to confusion amongst patients regarding the difference between compounding and manufacturing. If you do not know the difference, you need to understand the two techniques properly. This will help you take the right decisions and avoid any problems.
Differentiating Between the Two
When we talk about manufacturing medicines, it is related to preparing medicines in large quantities. The process followed, and the drugs used, are approved by the regulating authorities. This means that everything is done according to set rules and regulations, which ensure good quality and proper safety measures at each stage. The medicines are tested several times before being introduced and therefore, the probability of infection or any other side effect is nil.
On the other hand, compounding is creating medicines as per the patient’s requirements regarding concentration of drugs, strength, and the dosage. This is not possible in medicines manufactured by pharmaceutical companies. One important thing that every person should know is that these medicines are not approved. The standards vary from one area to another and thus, the processes and techniques vary as well. This is a concern, as you might not get the same medicine from every compound pharmacy.
What You Must Know
Usually when we talk about medicines, we think of capsules, powders, creams, gels, etc. However, this is not the case in compounded medicines. Most medicines made using this technique are available in liquid form and have to be injected or swallowed. Also, when you approach a compound pharmacy, you will notice that the medicine is made in small quantities as prescribed by the doctor.
There are a number of healthcare organizations that have proper facilities and equipment for making compound medicines. The in-house setup ensures that proper precautions are taken and drugs are used in right quantity. However, those who do not have such setups tie with companies and pharmacists who have knowledge about compounding. They provide all necessary medicines as per the patient, and make sure that there is no shortage of any drug.
Guidelines for Compounding
Even though the rules and regulations vary from one area to other, there are certain bodies that monitor the quality and standards. The compounding pharmacists need to do proper research before preparing any medicine, so that there are no adverse effects on the patients. Also, they are expected to use latest techniques and equipment for better standards. Companies prepare medicines in a safe environment and conduct relevant tests as well.
Healthcare organizations and companies are trying their level best to provide medicines after proper analysis. Companies and pharmacists are using the latest techniques and ensuring timely supply of medicines to the patients. If done with proper safety, compounding is indeed of great use for patients who do not get the desired treatment from medicines manufactured by companies. The need is to understand the process, and make certain that the pharmacist you choose for compounding is reliable and has proper knowledge about all drugs.