Prescribers use compounded medications for their patients for several reasons. The most important is to avoid patient non-compliance due to the patient’s unwillingness or inability to take the medication as directed. Many patients require dosages not available in standard strengths, or they may be allergic to one or more of the ingredients. This is where compounding enters the picture and those issues can be resolved to benefit the patient.
With a prescriber’s direction, compounding pharmacists are able to:
Preservatives Fine-tune the medication's strength Eliminate unwanted ingredients that might cause allergic response Flavor the oral medication to make it more palatable Prepare delivery systems specific to the patient’s needs, for instance creating a liquid form rather than a pill for patients who have difficulty swallowing. Many medications can be prepared in gel or cream for and absorbed through the skin. Other options are suppositories or sublingual lozenges.
Absolutely! They often benefit from compounding. Both children and elderly often dislike taking medicine because of the taste; a compounding pharmacist will work directly with the parent, patient, and physician to select a flavor agent geared to the patient’s preference. At the same time, the pharmacist will mix the proper ingredients for the medication with the flavoring agent and in compliance with prescriber’s instructions.
Patients with chronic pain or gastrointestinal issues are also often helped by compounded medications. Compounding pharmacists may work with a patient’s healthcare provider to provide topical medications to treat inflammation and/or pain. The medicine is absorbed through the skin bypassing gastric upset, thereby alleviating discomfort. Additionally, compounded gels or creams are used to relieve nausea and other symptoms for hospice patients.
The Food and Drug Administration confirms that compounded medications are ethical and legal provided they are prescribed for a particular patient by a licensed healthcare provider. Also, state boards of pharmacy regulate compounding activity.
All medications were compounded at one time since the origins of pharmacy until the birth of mass-produced drugs. During the last few decades, compounding has made a comeback largely because of research methods, quality control, and technological advances. It is commonly used worldwide for the benefit of patients.
Some insurance plans will allow full reimbursement. Others may require a co-pay. Even though the patient pays the pharmacy directly, many insurance companies will cover the final cost upon receipt of a patient claim form.
As with any commercially-prepared product, cost is dependent on the ingredients needed.
Almost any type of prescription can be compounded. They are ideal for any patient needing unique delivery devices as well as specific dosages.
Applications for compounded medications include:
Dermatology Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) Podiatry (jogger’s heel, etc.) Pain management Neuropathic pain Sports medicine Gastroenterology Wound healing Muscular inflammation Anti-fungal Hospice Pediatrics Dentistry Veterinary
call toll free
One of my patients takes multiple prescriptions for various conditions. To avoid negative drug interactions, I worked with the RX Care Compounding pharmacist to ensure the patient received the precise medications he needed yet minimizing the possibility of interactions.”
Dr. Stan Wilson, Florida