The numbers, letters, or different textual content that you just see on a tablet are its “imprint code,” a characteristic that helps you determine it. The FDA requires most OTC and prescription drug tablets and capsules to have an imprint. This code — mixed with the tablet’s measurement, coloration, and form — helps you inform it other than different drugs.
A tablet’s imprint code might be made up of any single letter or quantity, or any mixture of letters, numbers, marks, or symbols. It’d embrace phrases, the drugmaker’s title, or different particulars. As soon as a drugmaker submits a tablet’s imprint code to the FDA, the company shops it in a database that well being care professionals can entry.
The FDA encourages drugmakers to incorporate a letter or a quantity in a drug’s imprint code as a result of these digits may also help well being care employees determine a tablet extra simply than a logo or emblem alone, the company says. With the ability to shortly ID a tablet can save somebody’s life throughout a medical emergency, like an unintended overdose or drug poisoning, when each second counts.
Nonetheless, the FDA does exempt sure authorised medicine from needing an imprint. It considers making exemptions for causes like:
- The bodily qualities of the tablet make an imprint not possible.
- Well being employees give folks the tablet in a managed well being care setting, like a physician’s workplace.
- The drug isn’t meant for a affected person to tackle their very own.