The Effect of Brand, Active Ingredient, pH Level, and Presence of an Antacid on the Dissolving Rates of Different Cold Tablets

The purpose of the experiment was to determine if the brand of medication, presence of an antacid, and pH of stomach acid affect the dissolving time of medications. In order to determine this, we created a solution of hydrochloric acid (HCl) to represent stomach acid. Four types of pills (Sudafed and Wal-phed PE, and Sudafed and Wal-phed 12-Hour) were used to compare brands and active ingredients. The assigned materials were added to a solution of HCl pH 2 or HCl pH 4 and a uniform stirring process was conducted. For our statistical analysis we performed four 3-factor Designs of Experiment (DOE) using the dissolving times. Our statistical analysis proved that there is a significant difference between the dissolving times of pseudoephedrine and phenylephrine. Wal-phed (PE) with the active ingredient of phenylephrine dissolved much faster than Sudafed with the same active ingredient, while Sudafed (12-Hour) with the active ingredient of pseudoephedrine dissolved faster than Wal-phed with the same active ingredient. With an antacid present, the dissolving time increased on average by 6.57 minutes. The statistical analysis also proved that the pH of stomach acid did not have a significant effect on dissolving time.

Research Done By:

Lisa Pillow
Lake Shore High School

Amelia Zessin
Lake Shore High School