Full System Moisture Management for Drug Preservation

Full System Moisture Management for Drug Preservation


Moisture is a primary factor that can affect the stability of pharmaceuticals.  Exposed to excessive humidity, capsules can swell and aggregate, powdered ingredients can clump and moisture might directly affect the chemical stability of the drugs. All of these changes of physical or chemical properties can cause a drug to lose its efficacy before the end of its shelf life.

 The role of desiccants is to preserve drug products by addressing the moisture that can enter the microenvironment of the package from various sources including: moisture trapped in the headspace during packaging or released from the drug product itself; moisture vapor transmission through pharmaceutical bottle walls throughout shelf life; and ingress during open-close cycles by the patient.

 Addressing the question of drug preservation requires us to think of the packaging as a full system, combining the performance of the passive barrier with active management of the atmosphere within packaging’s headspace.

 The discussion will explore :

  • The parameters influencing the barrier properties of the container
  • The selection of the appropriate active material and amount of desiccant
  • The available options for integrating moisture management into the latest delivery systems
  • The latest developments in desiccant technologies to maintain an accurate humidity window where excessive moisture or excessive dryness are both a challenge