Why Can't Some Tablets Be Crushed?

14 December 2018, 14:52

Picture: PA

I take a tablet form of medicine and on the packaging it says do not crush take whole – why?



Name: Ben, Birmingham

Qualifications: Doctor

Answer: It depends on the drug.

Some drugs are meant to be released in a sustained manner and the coating helps this slow release.

Sometimes the acid in the stomach can destroy the drug.

The coating helps the drug survive until it gets to more alkaline areas of the gut, where the drug can be better absorbed.

Sometimes the drug can cause acid reflex.

The coating can help prevent this side effect.