The stability of medicines

Learning objective

All medicines have certain life-times. The appropriate term for this life-time is ‘shelf-life’ or expiration date, which is when aging medicines deteriorate. Whether made chemically or biologically, medicines deteriorate because of environmental factors and dosage form-related degradations. The stability of medicines is thus an important aspect for consumers and thepharmaceutical industry. This chapter begins by discussing different categories of stability (physical, chemical, microbiological, therapeutical, toxicological, and genotoxic), using specific marketed medicines to exemplify them. The following stability related issues are addressed:

•. how to store medicines at home

•. how to stabilize ...

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