Advantages and Disadvantages of Capsules

Advantages and Disadvantages of Capsules are as listed below,

advantages and disadvantages of capsule dosage form

A. Advantage of Capsules Over Tablets

Capsules are a popular form of medication that offer several advantages over other forms of medication. Here are some advantages of capsules:

  • Consistent dosing: Capsules provide a consistent dose of medication because the amount of medication in each capsule is pre-measured and controlled. This ensures that patients receive the exact amount of medication prescribed by their healthcare provider, which can be important for medications that require precise dosing.
  • Customizable dosing: Capsules can be customized to meet the specific needs of individual patients. For example, a patient who requires a smaller dose of medication can be given a smaller capsule with the appropriate amount of medication. This allows for more precise dosing and reduces the risk of over or under-dosing.
  • Controlled release: Some capsules are designed to release medication slowly over a period of time, which can provide more accurate and precise dosing for medications that require constant levels in the bloodstream. This can be especially important for medications used to treat chronic conditions.
  • Reduced gastrointestinal irritation: Capsules can be designed to reduce gastrointestinal irritation, which can improve the accuracy and precision of medication delivery. For example, some medications can cause stomach irritation when taken in tablet form, but capsules can be designed to dissolve slowly in the stomach, reducing the risk of irritation.
  • It delivers a tasteless/odorless dose form without the requirement for a further coating procedure, as tablets do.
  • Swallowing is easy for maximum patients, as the shell is smooth and hydrates in the human mouth. Additionally, it float if taken with liquid.
  • Their accessibility in a wide variety of colours makes it visually attractive.
  • Hard shell capsules have often been expected to have well bioavailability than tablets
  • Capsules permit a degree of flexibility of formulation not accessible with tablets formulation.
  • It is possible in soft gelatine capsules that active drugs in form of liquid or at least dissolved, solubilized, or suspended in a liquid vehicle possible to deliver.
  • Soft gelatine capsules can deliver volatile a drug and can be more suitable for drugs that are easily oxidized in the open air.

Overall, capsules offer several benefits that can improve the accuracy and precision of medication delivery. Patients should discuss their medication options with their healthcare provider to determine the best form of medication for their specific needs, taking into account the benefits and disadvantages of each form of medication.

B. Disadvantage of Capsules:

Capsules are a popular form of medication that contain medicine in a gelatin shell. While capsules have many benefits, such as easy swallowing, accurate dosing, and protection of the drug from light, there are also several disadvantages to their use.

  • Main Disadvantage of Capsules are not ideal for very small children.
  • Capsules convert stiff under very dry conditions and may crack during the filling procedure.
  • It absorbs moisture and softens under high relative humidity.
  • Possible stability difficulties may be related with capsules containing liquid fills.
  • Capsule products tend to be more costly to produce than tablets formulation.
  • Highly soluble salts (e.g., iodides, bromides, chlorides) normally should not be dispensed in hard gelatin capsules. Their quick release could cause gastric irritation due to the creation of a high drug concentration in localized areas.
  • Leaching of ingredients from soft gelatin capsule to formulation may affect.
  • Difficulty in swallowing: Although capsules are generally easier to swallow than tablets, some people may still find them difficult to swallow, particularly if they have a small throat or a strong gag reflex. This can be particularly problematic for elderly or pediatric patients, who may have difficulty swallowing pills in general.
  • Inability to split or crush: One disadvantage of capsules is that they cannot be split or crushed without compromising their effectiveness. This means that patients who require smaller doses of medication may not be able to adjust the dose to meet their specific needs. It can also be a problem for patients who have difficulty swallowing pills, as they may not be able to break the capsule to administer the medication in a different form.
  • Limited shelf-life: Capsules are more susceptible to moisture and humidity than tablets, which can reduce their effectiveness over time. This means that capsules may need to be stored in a cool, dry place to maintain their potency, and they may have a shorter shelf-life than other forms of medication.
  • Not suitable for all formulations: Capsules are not appropriate for all types of medications, especially those that are not soluble in water. Additionally, some medications may be sensitive to light or oxygen, which can make them less effective in a capsule form.
  • Risk of tampering: Because capsules cannot be easily broken, they may be more difficult to inspect for tampering or contamination. This can be a concern in situations where medication security is important, such as in hospitals or other healthcare settings.
  • Risk of choking: In rare cases, capsules can become lodged in the throat, leading to choking. This is more likely to occur in patients with swallowing difficulties or young children who may accidentally ingest capsules.
  • Higher cost: Capsules may be more expensive than other forms of medication, such as tablets or liquids, because of the added cost of the gelatin shell. This can be a concern for patients who have limited healthcare coverage or who are on a tight budget.

Overall, capsules have many benefits, but they also have several disadvantages that should be considered when selecting a medication form. Patients should discuss their medication options with their healthcare provider to determine the best form of medication for their specific needs.

This is all about advantages and disadvantages of capsule dosage form.


  • Allen L. and Ansel H. (2014). Ansel’s Pharmaceutical Dosage Forms and Drug Delivery Systems. Philadelphia: Lipincott Williams and Wilkins.
  • Aulton, M. and Taylor, K. (2013). Aulton’s Pharmaceutics Book- The Design and Manufacture of Medicines, (4th ed.). Edinburgh: Churchill Livingstone.
  • Dash, A., Singh, S. and Tolman, J. (2014). Pharmaceutics – Basic Principles and Application to Pharmacy Practice. USA: Academic Press.
  • Felton, L. (2012). Remington Essentials of Pharmaceutics. UK: Pharmaceutical press.

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