oa SA Pharmacist's Assistant - Excipients explained : the medicine cupboard

Volume 15, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 1608-9634
  • E-ISSN: 2220-1068



Excipients are inactive ingredients which are added during the manufacturing process of pharmaceutical products, such as oral and injectable preparations, topical products, eye, ear and nasal formulations, and suppositories. Their purpose is to aid the manufacturing process.

Although excipients are regarded as inactive, they can cause allergic reactions or adverse effects, such as hyperactivity, bronchoconstriction, itching and rashes on the skin, and gastrointestinal symptoms. The excipients contained in a medication do not always appear on the package insert.

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