Disintegration Testing

Disintegration testing measures the ability of a tablet to break down into smaller particles or granules to allow the active drug to be absorbed into the body.

The disintegration test is used to show how quickly the tablet breaks down into smaller particles, allowing for a greater surface area and availability of the drug when taken by a patient.

Disintegration testing can be affected by various factors, which include:

  • Binders
  • Lubricants
  • Surfactants
  • Hardness

To investigate how a tablet disintegrates, we use the Copley basket disintegration tester.

Reproducible and Standardised

At Merlin, we use a ‘disintegration tester’ which is described in the British Pharmacopoeia and USP.This is to ensure that the test is reproducible and standardised. An uncoated tablet should take no longer than 5 minutes to disintegrate.

The disintegration tester aims to test how long it will take for the tablet to disintegrate. This information is useful to help in the early development of tablet formulations.

How it Works

To carry out a disintegration test for tablets, we use a basket which holds 1 to 6 tablets. This is then raised and lowered into a beaker of water, which is used to simulate conditions in the stomach at 37°C. If the tablets or capsules float, perforated plastic disks are placed on the top of the tablets to keep them under the water level. The tablet disintegration time is taken when no residue is left in the mesh.

For more information about hardness testing, get in touch today by completing our online contact form here, by emailing info@merlin-pc.com, or by calling +44(0)1509 860 222.


References: (Ref: (British Pharmacopoeia, 2017. 9th ed. Appendix XII D, Ph. Eur. 2.9.1.) and (5.2.3 United States Pharmacopeia (USP): Revision Bulletin <701> Disintegration issued June 6, 2008, and official August 1, 2008.)) 

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