What is a Compound i.e. Compounded Medication, Prescription Compound?

Many people have heard the term or phrase Compounded Medication and always wanted to know what that meant – whether in your Insurance plan description, from a doctor, friend, family member, etc. but never asked! Here’s the answer;

A compounded medication is one that is not commercially available, ready to go – right off the shelf. There are many different kinds of compounded medications which range in complexity from simply adding a flavoring to make a medication taste better to the most complex which involve adding many ingredients in the most sterile of environments to create an intravenous to be administered to a patient directly through the bloodstream and everywhere in between.

Compounding really can be broken down to two types – non-sterile and sterile.

Non-sterile – These are medications that are given by mouth (oral), rubbed on to the skin (topical) or inserted rectally (anus) or vaginally which do not require that the final product be sterile (free from bacteria).

Sterile – These are medications that are given with a needle and introduced into the body either through the bloodstream, into or under the skin or into a muscle or put into one’s eye(s) – these products Require that the final product be free from bacteria and pyrogens (other bad things for the body).