Scientists Reveal the Best Way To Swallow Pills

The researchers found that consuming drugs whereas resting on the proper facet was by far the finest, permitting drugs to enter the deepest portion of the abdomen and dissolve 2.3 instances faster than even an upright posture.

According to a current Johns Hopkins examine, the way you swallow drugs can influence how shortly your physique absorbs the medication.

You in all probability dont think about your physique posture whereas taking pillswhen you’ve gotten a headache. However,current analysis from Johns Hopkins University found that your posture can considerably influence how shortly your physique absorbs the treatment, as a lot as an hour longer.

The conclusions are based mostly on what is assumed to bethe first mannequin to copy how a drug dissolves in the human abdomen.

We have been very shocked that posture had such an immense impact on the dissolution price of a capsule, mentioned senior writer Rajat Mittal, a Johns Hopkins engineer and an professional in fluid dynamics. I by no means thought of whether or not I used to be doing it proper or fallacious however now Ill undoubtedly give it some thought each time I take a capsule.

Their findings have been just lately revealed in the journal Physics of Fluids.

In recent years, models that accurately represent the working of various important organs, most notably the heart, have been developed. The teams model, StomachSim, appears to be one of the first to be able to conduct realistic simulations of the human stomach. StomachSim simulates what happens within a stomach as it breaks down food or, in this instance, medicine by fusing physics, biomechanics, and fluid mechanics.

Pill Posture

Your posture when taking a pill makes a big difference in how fast your body absorbs the medicine. Credit: Khamar Hopkins/Johns Hopkins University

The majority of pills dont start working until the stomach passes its contents into the intestine. As a result, the closer a pill falls to the antrum, the quicker it begins to break down and unload its contents into the duodenum, the first part of the small intestine. If youre aiming a pill for this part of the stomach, your posture is crucial in order to take use of gravity as well as the inherent asymmetry of the stomach.

Four postures were tested by the team. Taking tablets while resting on the right side was by far the most effective, sending pills into the deepest part of the stomach and achieving a dissolution rate that was 2.3 times quicker than even an upright posture. The worst was lying on the left side. The team was astounded to discover that if a tablet dissolves in 10 minutes on the right side, it may take up to 23 minutes in an upright posture and over 100 minutes while laying on the left side.

For elderly, sedentary or bedridden people, whether theyre turning to left or to the right can have a huge impact, Mittal said.

Standing upright was a decent second choice, essentially tied in effectiveness with lying straight back.

The team also considered stomachs that arent functioning at full strength due to gastroparesis caused by diseases such as diabetes and Parkinsons Syndrome meant for pill dissolution. Even a small change in the conditions of the stomach can lead to significant differences in the outcome of an oral drug, said lead author Jae Ho Mike Lee, a former postdoctoral researcher at Johns Hopkins.

The impact of stomach disease on drug dissolution was similar to that of posturewhich underscores how significant a difference posture makes.

Posture itself has such a huge impact it, its equivalent to somebodys stomach having a very significant dysfunction as far as pill dissolution is concerned, Mittal said.

Future work will attempt to predict how the changes in the biomechanics of the stomach affect how the body absorbs drugs, how food is processed in the stomach, and the effect of posture and gastroparesis on food digestion.

Reference: Computational modeling of drug dissolution in the human stomach: Effects of posture and gastroparesis on drug bioavailability by J. H. Lee, S. Kuhar, J.-H. Seo, P. J. Pasricha and R. Mittal, 9 August 2022, Physics of Fluids.
DOI: 10.1063/5.0096877

The study was funded by the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health.

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