Origins of Compounding
In the 1930s and 1940s, approximately 60 percent of all medications were compounded. During the 1950s and 60s, with the advent of manufacturing, compounding declined. The pharmacist’s role as a preparer of medications quickly changed to that of a dispenser of manufactured dosage forms. Since the 1980s, physicians and patients have realized the many benefits of preparing customized medications to meet specific patient needs. Today, an estimated 43,000 prescriptions are compounded daily, or one percent of total prescriptions dispensed.
Reasons for Compounding
Many patients are sensitive to drugs – some are allergic to preservatives, dyes, or traditional drug strengths. A pharmacist can now alter a drug’s form to make it easier for the patient to ingest, add flavor to it to make it more pleasant, or change the form (say into a lollipop) so the medicine is easier for a child to ingest.