Pharmaceutical preparations are introduced into the body by several routes:
1. Oral route. Most commonly, drugs are administered orally. The reason for this is that the oral route is the most convenient, usually the safest and least expensive way of application. However, it has also some defects. First of all, drugs administered orally may have unpleasant taste. Second of all, because of the fact that they move through the digestive tract and undergo metabolic processes, these drugs often reach lower concentrations in the organism compared to the preparations for example injected intravenously. It is also possible for them to harm the digestive tract (aspirin, for example, irritates the lining of the stomach and small intestine). Patients should be careful when taking more than one drug together – other preparations, just as food, may affect drug absorption. Oral route becomes unhelpful when a drug must be administered rapidly, when a patient is not able to swallow, when a drug is poorly absorbed from the digestive tract, or when a very precise dose is needed. In this situation a drug product may be administered through injection.
2. Injection route. Parenteral administration may be conducted intravenously (a drug is immediately delivered to the bloodstream and tends to take effect more quickly than when administered by any other route), intramuscularly (into a muscle, usually of the upper arm, thigh, or buttock), subcutaneously or hypodermically (just below the skin), and intrathecally (into the spinal canal).
3. Sublingual route. A drug may be placed under the tongue and after dissolving it may be absorbed directly into the blood vessels on the underside of the tongue. The process is very fast.
4. Rectal route. Many drugs may be administered as suppositories. Thanks to the relatively thin rectum wall and good blood supply, the active substance may be rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream.
5. Vaginal route. This way of application is intended above all for the topical administration. Drugs may be taken as a solution, intravaginal tablet, cream, ointment, gel, or suppository.
6. Inhalation. Drugs are administered through the mouth and are atomized into very small particles. This process enables them to reach the lungs where they may be absorbed into the bloodstream.
QUESTIONS. Choose TRUE or FALSE
1. Most often, drugs are taken orally.
2. Oral route is the most efficient way of drug administration, which enables to reach the highest concentrations of an active substance in blood.
3. Polypragmasy may affect drug absorption.
4. Rectal route enables to reach therapeutic drug concentrations in blood very quickly.
5. Intravaginal tablets are usually intended for the general administration.
administration [ædmɪnəˈstreɪʃən] – tu: podawanie (leku)
to introduce [tə ɪntrəˈdus] – tu: wprowadzać
oral route [ˈɔrəl rut] – droga doustna
injection route [ɪnˈdʒɛkʃən rut] – droga iniekcji
sublingual route [sʌbˈlɪŋgwəl rut] – droga podjęzykowa
rectal route [ˈrɛktl rut] – droga doodbytnicza
vaginal route [ˈvædʒənl rut] – droga dopochwowa
inhalation [ɪnhəˈleɪʃən] – inhalacja
digestive tract [dɪˈdʒɛstɪv trakt] – przewód pokarmowy
to undergo [tə ʌndərˈgoʊ] – podlegać
lining [ˈlaɪnɪŋ] – wyściółka
small intestine [smɔl ɪnˈtɛstɪn] – jelito cienkie
rapid [ˈræpɪd] – szybki
to swallow [tə ˈswɒloʊ] – połykać
intravenous [ɪntrəˈvinəs] – dożylny
intramuscular [ɪntrəˈmʌskyələr] – domięśniowy
thigh [θaɪ] – udo
buttock [ˈbʌtək] – pośladek
subcutaneous [sʌbkyuˈteɪniəs] – podskórny
intrathecal [ɪntrəˈθɪ:kəl] – dooponowy, dokanałowy
to dissolve [tə dɪˈzɒlv] – rozpuszczać
bloodstream [ˈblʌdstrim] – krwiobieg
#Correct answers: true, false, true, true, false
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