Solid Dosage Forms: Difference Between Oral Thin Films and Tablets

February 4, 2021 Spread the awareness:

A drug is a critical component that is often advised and administered by medical practitioners. It is used in the prevention or treatment of several diseases. You need to consume the drug, as per the suggested dosage. 

Dosage is the quantity of the drug substance, which can be presented in the market in different ways. There are many forms of dosage, such as liquid form, solid form, and external application. We all know about all these options, and some of us might have read a lot about it, isn’t it? But what you might not know is about the latest innovation and reformation in the pharmaceutical industry – Oral Thin Films. This dosage form is an effective and competent novel drug delivery solution that helps in improving patient adherence.

Here, let us discuss the Difference Between Oral Thin Films and Tablets and how OTFs are different and better than the traditional dosage forms.

What are Oral Thin Films?

Oral Thin Films, popularly known as OTFs, are the orally administered dosage form that has a thin film-forming polymer, plasticisers, API’s, other additives, etc. 

As mentioned earlier, now the fast-dissolving films are igniting much more attention and interest over fast-dissolving tablets. There has been a transition to an oral drug delivery system. Now, patients resort to newer and better modes of medication instead of the same conventional tablets. 

Oral Thin Films are an appropriate alternative to tablets. It is the latest and modern dosage form offered by Zimlabs, an EU-GMP Certified company. Using the best technology and offering quality products, ZIM Laboratories has been benefitting their clients, making healthcare niche and affordable to all.

Difference Between Oral Thin Films and Tablets

Oral Thin Films Tablets
OTFs disintegrate rapidly in the mouth and therefore, are easy to swallow instantly. Tablets are not highly recommended for infant and geriatric patients as it is difficult to swallow and may lead to choking.
Better compliance as no liquid is required to take the medication Low compliance.
Rapid action as this drug is absorbed within the oral cavity and not digested. The effect is quite slow and steady
Due to the pre-gastric absorption ability, it has no side effects. Tablets might have side effects.
Normally it has a pleasant taste and hence, suited for Paediatrics patients. All tablets are not good in taste.
More durable and stable. Low shelf life.

Oral Thin Films: A Better Option Than Tablets

The Difference Between Oral Thin Films and Tablets illustrates the many unique advantages OTFs have compared to tablets and other conventional oral medications. Here we list some. 

  • As you keep the OTFs on the tongue, it gets hydrated and quickly dissolves in the oral cavity. Because of this, it ensures fast local and systemic action. This feature increases the effectiveness of OTFs and hence is preferred over tablets when it comes to enhancing patient adherence. 
  • OTFs are just like thin strips, quite like the size of a stamp. Paediatrics and Geriatrics have welcomed this medical innovation with wide arms for the portability and convenience it offers. As per the marketing research conducted by many firms, OTFs are already an emerging market, and the global market for OTFs is projected to see a meteoric rise by 2025. In fact, OTFs are expected to beat the market of tablets, as people will be migrating to using the OTFs instead of consuming tablets. 
  • These thin films are specially designed to dissolve quickly as and when they come in contact with a wet surface like saliva present in the tongue. Because of the quick-dissolving feature, it is proven to be more effective and provides immediate results than tablets. 
  • It takes just a few seconds for the patients to consume OTFs without any additional liquid. Can you have a tablet without water? No. It becomes a hassle to fetch water every time you need to consume a tablet. When you are traveling, and you might not have water with you, at that time OTFs are the best and the most convenient option you can ever get. Because of this convenience, the patients prefer hassle-free OTFs over-consuming tablets. 
  • Oral Thin Film disintegrates and dissolves in the oral cavity quickly due to the direct access to a large surface area. OTFs ensure that the drug is directly absorbed and circulated in the system. Due to this, it also has no negative impact on the gastrointestinal tract. This feature makes the strips one of the most popular and acceptable among geriatric patients over traditional tablets. 
  • Many companies are utilizing high-class technology to develop a thinner film dosage. These kinds of advancements are benefitting the end consumer even more. 
  • The oral route of taking medicine is considered one of the most preferred and the safest routes of the drug. It is not only convenient but cost-effective too. Already, this form of dosage has become a consumer choice when compared to tablets. 
  • Oral Thin Films also offer ease of administration, resulting in improved patient compliance. OTFs are helpful for patients who have difficulty in swallowing, especially in the case of children and geriatric patients. Also, many patients suffering from nausea and getting chemotherapy find it difficult to swallow tablets. These oral films allow patients to overcome swallowing difficulties, which is rampant in the case of tablets and capsules. 
  • Oral Thin Films offer rapid disintegration and self-administration, which ensures improved patient compliance. Due to this new and innovative way of consuming the drug, the patients do not miss their dose, as they did in the case of tablets.  
  • Many dosage forms have been developed in the past, such as adhesive tablets, gels, ointments, patches, etc., but Oral Thin Films seem to be preferred over them all.
  • This type of dosage form also has a better shelf life than tablets. 
  • Oral Thin Films are made by using polymer alone or in combination. Water-soluble polymers are safe as they are non-toxic, non-irritant, and don’t have leachable properties.
  • Oral Thin Films also offers stability, transportability, convenience of handling, ease of maintaining, easy administration, no special requirement for packaging, no processing requirements, etc., and therefore preferred by many pharmaceutical companies compared to tablets. 
  • Normally, it has a pleasant taste and hence, suited for paediatric patients. Consider the taste of a tablet! Isn’t it much better?
  • The pharma companies manufacture OTFs in such a way that it gets distributed evenly and therefore, there are higher dosage accuracy levels as compared to other drug formulations like tablets. 
  • With oral disintegrating strips, the patient is not subject to the risk, pain, inconvenience of shots, etc. 

    Wrapping Up

    From the above-mentioned discussion, it is quite clear that Oral Thin Films are a superior alternative to traditional capsules and tablets. The best part is that due to the low cost and ease of administration, this therapeutic method garners an elevated level of patient compliance. 

    In the past few years, many have been researching in this field of medical innovation. Out of all the rapid drug-releasing products, Oral Strip Technology is found to be the chart-topper. It surely has more benefits as compared to tablets. 

    If you are also interested in trying OTFs, do visit ZIM Laboratories’ differentiated product portfolio. We, a leading innovator in drug delivery solutions, are experts in making quality healthcare products mainly focused on enhancing patient convenience and compliance. 

About ZIM Laboratories

ZIM Labs is an innovative drug delivery solution provider focusing on improving patient convenience and adherence to drug intake. We offer a range of technology-based drug delivery solutions and non-infringing proprietary manufacturing processes for the production and supply of innovative and differentiated generic pharmaceutical products to our customers globally. At ZIM Labs we provide our customers a comprehensive range of value-added solid dosage differentiated generic products in semi-finished and finished categories/formulations. These include granules, pellets (sustained, modified, extended-release), taste-masked powders, suspensions, tablets, capsules, and recently developed Oral Thin Films (OTF).

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