Structural Biochemistry/Solid Dosage Forms


Tablets are found generally in various size, color, shape, and weight. It is so called the most popular dosage form that is widely used in pharmacy practice because of its advantages: compactness, portability, accuracy, convenience, and lack of taste. Several formulation aids (diluents, excipients, binders, lubricants, disintegrators, coloring, and flavoring agents) are combined with the active ingredient before the mixture is put through mechanical compression in a tableting machine to produce a compact SOLID dosage form of drugs.

However, the drug must be break-down in the stomach so that it will be released under molecular form to be biologically active. This process contributes to one of the properties of tablet form: long onset of action.

Chewable tablets:Edit

a form of tablets that can be chewed or dissolved in the mouth before swallowing.

Enteric-coated tablets:Edit

this kind of tablets is not designed to be dissolved in the stomach but is meant to be broken down in the intestines of a patient. To make this happen, the compressed tablets are coated with specific substances to prevent them from melting inside the stomach. Because of it specific structure, these drugs are inhibited to be chewed or crushed before swallowing. Antacids cause dissolution in the stomach so it is forbidden to be taken with the enteric- coated tablets.

Sublingual tablets:Edit

are designed to be placed under patients’ tongue so that the active ingredient can be absorbed into the blood stream right away and make its first circulates throughout the body before breaking down in the liver.

Buccal Tablets:Edit

are left between the gum and cheek of the patients because this drug will dissolves there slowly over a period of time.

Film-coated tablets:Edit

are drugs that coated with water-soluble material that protect sensitive drugs from deterioration due to light and air, masks the odor or taste for the patients to obtain easier.

Sustained, timed-release tablets:Edit

other names are long-acting/ delayed release /prolonged-action tablets. These tablets are designed specially so that the active ingredient is metabolized slowly at a constant rate for a prolonged period of time, around 8 to 24 hours.

Lozenges (troches/pastilles tablets)Edit

has oval or discoid in shape so that it will dissolve slowly and kept in contact with the mouth or throat for a prolonged period of time.


are being implanted as a method of birth control or hormones such as testosterone and estradiol. These cylindrically shaped tablets are implanted under the skin so that the drug can be absorbed slowly in a long period of time.


are a solid forms of dosage in which the drug is packed inside a soft or hard gelatin shell. The shell sizes range from 000 to a number 5 capsule (largest to smallest respectively), and will dissolves to release the drug after 10 to 30 minutes in the stomach. The advantages of this dosage form are that it will provide various distinguishable shapes and colors, moreover, will eliminate the tastes and odors the drug has.

Effervescent tablet:Edit

This kind of tablets will serve as the mask of unpleasant, bitter tasting drug by using the acid-base reaction between sodium bicarbonate with either citric acid or tartaric acid. The reaction will help dissolves matter into the solutions and causes “effervescence” by the liberation of carbon dioxide gas.


Reifman, Noah. Certification Review For Pharmacy Technicians. 9th ed. the United States of America: AuthorHouse, 2011. 61-88. Print.