Overview of empty pharmaceutical capsules, including empty vegetarian hard capsules and empty hard gelatin capsules for oral pharmaceutical applications.
What is a medicinal empty capsule?
Empty pharmaceutical capsules are used to package powders, pills, or tablet mixtures containing active ingredients that, when administered, produce the desired therapeutic effect. This practice goes beyond pharmaceuticals, as empty capsules are the most common choice for storing herbal and non-pharmaceutical powder preparations, as well as other substances.
Using empty capsules to make homemade supplements is a simple process. Many people use empty capsules to make their vitamin and herbal blends, which are more cost-effective than buying such products from the market.
The empty capsule consists of two distinct parts, a body, and a lid. The body is first filled with a mixture of active ingredients and excipients and then closed with a lid using a manual or automatic press.
Depending on the raw materials or ingredients used to make these capsule shells, empty capsules can be divided into two types: (1) hard gelatin or (2) hydroxypropyl methylcellulose (HPMC) capsules. Empty capsules of gelatin and vegetable capsules (HPMC) are available in a variety of sizes.
A hard gelatin capsule (two-piece capsule) is a solid dosage form in which one or more pharmaceutical agents and/or inert materials are enclosed within a hard gelatin capsule shell.
Empty HPMC capsules:
HPMC capsules are two-piece capsules that serve as a vegetarian alternative to hard gelatin capsules for certain dietary and cultural needs.
During the manufacture of empty hard gelatin capsules and empty HPMC capsules, the process of filling the capsules is called encapsulation. Capsule filling, also known as encapsulation, is the process of encapsulating active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs) inside empty capsules, allowing them to be taken orally.
It is important to distinguish empty capsule manufacturers from those engaged in capsule filling (liquid or dry filling). While empty capsule manufacturers are involved in the manufacture of hard gelatin capsule shells or vegetarian capsule shells, suppliers of hard capsule shell encapsulation or filling focus on internal filling materials and filling procedures. Empty capsule manufacturers that also offer capsule filling can act as an end-to-end organization to fulfill all one's empty capsule requirements under one roof.
Empty medicinal capsules further impart the added benefit of masking taste and odor, making solid dosage forms more attractive for consumption. Furthermore, medicinal empty capsules give consumers the option to combine two or more medicinal ingredients and also allow for dosage flexibility. These benefits, and many others, make empty capsules popular for facilitating drug delivery.