Updated: October 2020; Written: December 2018 by Temesgen Asfaw,PharmD. Candidate


At Innovation Compounding, we work with a variety of special populations who have unique therapeutic needs. In particular, the pediatric, autistic, elderly, and veterinary populations often cannot tolerate or consume traditional retail medications. For these populations, compounding pharmacies can provide alternatives to conventional medications. By compounding medications into specialized dosage forms or manipulating different flavor options to increase compliance of individual patients, the needs of a given special population can be met.


Compounding for the Elderly

In elderly patients, dysphagia or difficulty swallowing is a major problem. If a patient has trouble swallowing, it can be very difficult to ensure they get the necessary amount if they are taking an oral medication. Average geriatric patients take at least five prescription medications, most of which are solid dosage forms. This could lead a patient to manipulate solid dosage forms by splitting or crushing tablets, opening capsules, or skipping doses altogether.

Pharmacy compounding offers a way of addressing some of these issues by providing oral liquids, topical creams, ointments, and gels, rapid-dissolving tablets, injections, suppositories, and more. Several medications can even be combined into one to simplify dosing and improve compliance. In addition, oral medications have a higher chance of causing gastrointestinal problems and drug interactions. In such situations, compounded topical creams or lotions provide the best alternatives to avoid these adverse events.


Compounding for Pediatric Patients

In pediatric patients, it can be challenging to administer commercially-available oral medications because many children cannot swallow tablets or capsules yet. In situations like this, compounding can provide appropriate dosage alternatives, including:

  • suspensions
  • solutions
  • emulsions
  • suppositories
  • gummies and lollipops
  • rapid dissolving tablets with various flavoring options

This can come as a relief to parents since they know their child can more easily accept their full medication and is well on their way to feeling better. In autistic patients, many physicians believe preservatives or sugars are contraindicated. The ability to compound active drug ingredients using preservative- and sugar-free bases reassures the physician that their patient is getting the best care using the most appropriate drug combinations.


Compounding for Pets

The pet population can also pose challenges when attempting to administer commercially-available oral medications. Irregular tablet sizes and unflavored or unpalatable medications can make administration to pets difficult. Compounded medications can allow for customized and flavored (with beef, chicken or liver) medications as appropriate alternatives to properly deliver the medication for veterinary patients. Additionally, compounding the active drug ingredient into a bone-shaped treat or with a peanut-butter base has proven to be a perfect way to allow pets to receive their full dose of medication each time. Pets who may have to take multiple medications can also be difficult to manage. Compounding multiple drugs as a single dose is the best alternative to manage a pet’s medication with fewer difficulties.

The beauty of compounding is its ability to cater to these types of populations to increase patient compliance and to allow access to the specific medications they require. Because of compounding, patients who otherwise would have to go without now have more options and a better outlook on their health.


Contact Us

If your patients have unique therapeutic needs who could potentially benefit from compounding, reach out to one of our pharmacists to learn how to get started!


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Medical Disclaimer This content is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not intended to provide medical advice or take the place of such information or treatment from a personal physician. All readers/viewers of this content are advised to consult their doctors or qualified health professionals regarding specific health questions. Neither Innovation Compounding, Inc. nor the publisher of this content takes responsibility for possible health consequences of any person or persons reading or following the information in this educational content. All viewers of this content, especially those taking prescription or over-the-counter medications, should consult their physicians before beginning any medication, nutritional supplement, diet, or health regimen.

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