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Tablet vs caplet

Discussion in 'Italian-English' started by Paulfromitaly, Oct 20, 2008.

  1. Paulfromitaly

    Paulfromitaly MODerator

    Brescia (Italy)
    Italian
    Hello dear friends,

    I've always thought that what we call pillola or pastiglia was correctly translated as tablet (we're talking about medicines of course).
    A few days ago I found the word caplet on a blister of some American cough drugs.

    Caplet: A smooth, coated, oval-shaped medicine tablet intended to be tamper-resistant.


    What's the difference between a tablet and a caplet??

    Cheers.
     
     
  2. TimLA

    TimLA Senior Member

    Los Angeles
    English - US
    Hey guy.

    A "tablet" is something solid that is made from a medication and a powder binder (vehicle), that when placed in a die under high pressure, it comes out looking like THIS.

    A "capsule" is a gel outer shell into which medication is placed. The edges of the capsule are sometimes sealed, sometimes not.
    They look like THIS. They can often be opened, sometimes not.

    A "caplet" is a compressed combination of a vehicle and drug (like a tablet) that looks like THIS. The advantages are (1) it can be scored, thus you can break it in half, (2) it cannot be tampered with, (3) sometimes it is easier for a patient to swallow - some patients complain of large tablets.

    Capsule + tablet = caplet
     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2008
  3. Paulfromitaly

    Paulfromitaly MODerator

    Brescia (Italy)
    Italian
    Perfect!
    Thanks

    One little clarification about point (2) : what would tampering with a tablet entail? (taken that differently from a caplet, you can actually tamper with a tablet..)
     
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2008
  4. Alxmrphi Senior Member

    Reykjavík, Ísland
    UK English
    Caplet.......... very rarely said, all those things above people would refer to as tablets, a capsule maybe.... a caplet, it'd have to be someone who knows a lot about tablets to use different words, as at least in the common-folk language, lol :p that's what they are.. all tablets.
     
  5. miri

    miri Senior Member

    Italy/Italian
    I guess you could open the outer shell of a capsule and put different medication in it, which you can't do with a caplet or a tablet.
     
  6. Paulfromitaly

    Paulfromitaly MODerator

    Brescia (Italy)
    Italian
    Maybe a capsule, but how can you doctor a tablet?
     
  7. Alxmrphi Senior Member

    Reykjavík, Ísland
    UK English
    Please I hope that wasn't meant to be a pun!

    Simple Paul, you can add things to it and pressure it together again, like what lots of people do with drugs, put "filler" in it to make it seem like it contains more than it actually does.
     
  8. Paulfromitaly

    Paulfromitaly MODerator

    Brescia (Italy)
    Italian
    Alex, I can see how you can do that with a capsule, but what about a tablet?
    A tablet is hard just like a caplet..
     
  9. Alxmrphi Senior Member

    Reykjavík, Ísland
    UK English
    Yeah, it'd involve crushing it first, mixing it with stuff and putting it back in a pressure hold that remoulds the tablet.
    I think essentially we're getting to the point that they can all be tampered with, with relative ease, if you have the right tools.
    I think this is why a lot of tablets have special markings on, because you can't recreate those without a LOT of effort, so it is a lot more complicated than a capsule, which generally has no markings, so to tamper with (and get away with it) a tablet/caplet, it's extremely hard if it's meant to have special markings on it (as the pics given my TimLa show most tablets generally do)
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2008
  10. Paulfromitaly

    Paulfromitaly MODerator

    Brescia (Italy)
    Italian
    I was under the impression that if you can temper with a tablet, you can do the same with a caplet, but from what Tim said it's not quite like that.
     
  11. Alxmrphi Senior Member

    Reykjavík, Ísland
    UK English
    I'm with you. A caplet is a tablet in the shape of a capsule, essentially the same thing.
    If there is a difference, it wasn't explained above.

    [Edit] See
     
  12. TimLA

    TimLA Senior Member

    Los Angeles
    English - US
    The concerns regarding tampering started in 1982 with Tylenol capsules.

    A pazzo in Chicago opened up bottles of capsules, opened one of the capsules, removed the acetaminophen,
    replaced it with cyanide, then placed it back on the shelf.
    Random deaths occurred (surprise).
    Since then, "anti-tampering" laws came about where you have a whole series of safeguards on bottles,
    where if someone has tampered with it, you will know.
    Some "capsules" were also changed so that they were "sealed", and temper-proof.

    If I had to bet, "caplets" were devised for the reasons I mentioned above.



    A Capulet by any other name would smell as sweet...:D
     
  13. Alxmrphi Senior Member

    Reykjavík, Ísland
    UK English
    Nice:p!
     
  14. anglomania1

    anglomania1 Senior Member

    Piacenza, Italy
    UK English
    Hi Paul,
    I've just reread all the posts and Tim doesn't actually say a tablet can be tampered with.
    He says that one of the advantages of the caplet is that it CANNOT be tampered with, but maybe he was just comparing it to the capsule and didn't mean it to be taken that a tablet CAN be tampered with.
    Does that make sense? Maybe it's just the way he wrote it:),
    Anglo
     
  15. Paulfromitaly

    Paulfromitaly MODerator

    Brescia (Italy)
    Italian
    Yes, I know what you mean :)
    From what Tim said and from the definition of caplet (in which it specifies it cannot be tampered with, as this fact were a peculiarity of caplets only) I deduced that both a tablet and a capsule could be tampered with, but I was wrong.
     
  16. Alxmrphi Senior Member

    Reykjavík, Ísland
    UK English
    :)
     
  17. TimLA

    TimLA Senior Member

    Los Angeles
    English - US
    In terms of "tampering", it would be VERY difficult to tamper with a caplet or tablet.
    Drill out a tiny hole, fill it will poison the same color as the caplet/tablet,
    then put it back in the bottle.
    But then you'd have to get past the "seals" on the bottle - perhaps the most
    important part of the "anti-tamper" process.
     

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