From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

A suppository is a dosage form used to deliver medications by insertion into a body orifice where it dissolves or melts to exert local or systemic effects. There are three types of suppositories, each to insert into a different sections: Rectal suppositories into the rectum, vaginal suppositories into the vagina, and urethral suppositories into the urethra of a male.


Several different ingredients can be used to form the base of a suppository: cocoa butter or a similar substitute, polyethylene glycol, hydrogels, and glycerinated gelatin. The type of material used depends on the type of suppository, the type of drug, and the conditions in which the suppository will be stored.[1]

Rectal suppositories[edit]

Glycerin suppositories (laxative)

In 1991, a study on suppository insertion in The Lancet found that the "torpedo" shape helps the device to travel internally, increasing its efficacy.[2] The findings of this single study have been challenged as there is insufficient evidence on which to base clinical practice.[3]

Four 500 mg paracetamol suppositories

Urethral suppositories[edit]

Alprostadil pellets are urethral suppositories used for the treatment of severe erectile dysfunction. They are marketed under the name Muse in the United States of America.[4] Its use has diminished since the development of oral impotence medications.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Troy, David B.; Beringer, Paul (2006). Remington: The Science and Practice of Pharmacy. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. pp. 884–885. ISBN 9780781746731.
  2. ^ Abd-El-Maeboud, K. H.; T. El-Naggar; E. M. M. El-Hawi; S. A. R. Mahmoud; S. Abd-El-Hay (28 September 1991). "Rectal suppository: commonsense and mode of insertion". The Lancet. 338 (8770): 798–800. doi:10.1016/0140-6736(91)90676-G. PMID 1681170. S2CID 23190075.
  3. ^ Bradshaw, Ann; Lynda Price (20 December 2006). "Rectal suppository insertion: the reliability of the evidence as a basis for nursing practice" (PDF). Journal of Clinical Nursing. 16 (1): 98–103. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2702.2005.01519.x. PMID 17181671. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2020-02-29.
  4. ^ "Muse Suppository - Facts and Comparisons". Retrieved 4 January 2013.