Research Article

Comparison of 12 different containers for dispensing anti-inflammatory drugs.

Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1984; 288 doi: (Published 03 March 1984) Cite this as: Br Med J (Clin Res Ed) 1984;288:699
  1. P Le Gallez,
  2. H A Bird,
  3. V Wright,
  4. A P Bennett


    Twelve containers manufactured by 10 pharmaceutical companies for dispensing anti-inflammatory drugs, 10 of which are currently in use in the United Kingdom, have been compared in 99 patients with arthritis of the hands. Patients were given the containers in random order and were asked to open them, extract the tablets, and close them. Patients were questioned on ease of handling at each stage and were then timed on reopening and closing each container. Finally, the patients were asked which container was the best and which was the worst. There was a wide variation in popularity of containers. One was judged outstanding on almost every attribute, and four were preferred over the others on most attributes. A successful container for arthritic hands is likely to have a sharply angulated or "wing" cap placed on a tall slim base that is also angulated. Flip off tops, tops with long threads requiring many turns, very small containers, and glass were regarded as unfavourable. Manufacturers should take note of these findings and, where necessary, consider redesigning the containers.