History and Evolution of Compounding

Where Did It Originate?

It is difficult to pinpoint the ancestries of compounding as the process of combining different agents began in a basic Pharmacy Compounding Timeline form before the term compounding ever existed. However, the art of compounding medications can be linked to the origins of pharmacy itself and the first documented chemical processes can be traced as far back as the time of the Egyptians.

How Has It Evolved Over The Years

It was originally commonplace for physicians to both prescribe and compound a patient’s medication themselves. Only late in the 19th century did we began to see a clear distinction between the role of a physician and that of a pharmacist.

Historically, compounding has been an integral part of the pharmaceutical process; in the early 1900’s, the majority of all medications were still the result of pharmaceutical compounding. However, as the 20th century progressed, the need for compounding pharmacies diminished due to the advent of mass drug manufacturing.

Today, the compounding pharmacy industry is experiencing a resurgence as the importance of custom-made medications becomes more prevalent. The demand for customized prescription medication is on the rise as drug manufacturers do not always meet the distinct requirements of each patient. As always, compounding pharmacists are there to provide customized solutions to their patients’ unique needs.


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