Questions and Answers
Within the last few decades, however, compounding has experienced a renaissance as modern technology and innovative techniques and research have allowed more pharmacists to customize medications to meet a patient’s unique needs.
With a physician’s consent, a compounding pharmacist can:
- Adjust the strength of a medication
- Avoid unwanted ingredients, such as dyes, preservative, lactose, gluten, or sugar.
- Add flavor to make the medication more palatable
- Prepare medications using unique delivery systems.
For patients who find it difficult to swallow a capsule, a compounding pharmacist may prepare the drug as a flavored liquid suspension instead.
Other medication forms include topical gels or creams that can be absorbed through the skin, suppositories, sublingual troches, or even lollipops.
Compounding pharmacists also can help patients who experience chronic pain. For example, some arthritic patients cannot take certain medications due to gastrointestinal side effects. With a healthcare practitioner’s prescription, a compounding pharmacist may be able to provide these patients’ anti-inflammatory or pain-relieving medications with topical preparations that can be absorbed through the skin. Compounded prescriptions frequently are used to ease pain, nausea, and other symptoms for hospice patients as well.
- Hormone replacement therapy (HRT)
- Pain management
- Otic (for the ear)
- Medication flavoring
- Sports medicine
- Wound therapy
- And many more!