Medicines contain one or more pharmacologically active compounds that are responsible for the product’s therapeutic activity. Excipients, or pharmaceutical additives, are all the other parts of the formulation. Although excipients are not the principal 'active' constituents of a medicinal product they do, in many cases, have pharmacological activity. This means they can occasionally cause side effects in their own right. Sometimes an unexpected reaction to a medicine can be explained by considering the potential effects of excipients. Alternatively, a patient or healthcare professional may know about a problem with a specific excipient and ask you to check new medicine to ensure that the excipient is not present.

Accreditation number for this module: S2019/108

This module has been accredited for 1 hour of Group-1 CPD (or 1 CPD credit) or 1 hour of Group-2 CPD (or 2 CPD credits) upon successful completion of the module's Test yourself multiple choice questions, suitable for inclusion in an individual pharmacist’s CPD plan.