Medicines for indigestion: which is better?

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Almost every Russian in the medicine cabinet there are medicines that improve digestion. This is not surprising, because they are among the ten most popular products. However, few people know how to act drugs "from the stomach," and how they differ from each other. Try to understand.

In fact, despite the variety of drugs, which aid in digestion, they all have one and the same active substance — pancreatin. This extract pancreas which contains enzymes — amylase, lipase and protease. Amylase breaks down carbohydrates, lipase — fats, protease — proteins. In healthy people, the pancreas secretes pancreatin in 12 duodenal ulcer in sufficient quantity. If its function is reduced or the person corny pereel, the digestive enzymes are missing — the food is poorly absorbed. It was then, and come to the aid of drugs containing an extra dose of pancreatin.

     The Story of a medication

Fight the symptoms of digestive disorders — nausea, flatulence, abdominal pain and diarrhea, people began long before they figured out what's inside your digestive tract. The ancient Egyptians were saved from the pain in his stomach meat, eating it raw, and extract of henbane, the ancient Greeks were treated with diet and massage, the ancient Romans with overeating caused at vomiting.

Start a scientific approach to solving problems of digestion laid in 1659 by a German physician, physiologist and anatomist and chemist Francis Sylvius. He proved that the pancreas gland allocates a 12-duodenum juice, and suggested that this juice is involved in digestion. A hundred years later, the French physiologist Claude Bernard invented a way to produce pancreatic juice and gave it the name "pancreatin" — from the Latin name of the pancreas «pancreas». By studying the properties of pancreatin, Bernard found that it breaks down carbohydrates, and proteins, and fats. Moreover, if the proteins and carbohydrates are digested in the gastrointestinal tract and without pancreatin, the fat — not. That is why pancreatic diseases fatty foods practically not absorbed. In 1861, the Russian biochemist Alexander Yakovlevich Danilevsky proved that pancreatin is a mixture of different enzymes, each of which has its point of application — proteins, fats or carbohydrates.

So it was found a panacea for digestion — pancreatin.

The first time, doctors personally prepared extract of beef or pork pancreas and fed them to the patients. History has preserved the name of the first experimenter, who was treating a patient from indigestion by the pancreas of calves — Joseph Alexander Fles.

Medicines for indigestion: which is better?

Factory medication for digestion appeared in 1897. They were issued in the form of powder (a very bitter taste), which is obtained from the dried and crushed the pancreas of pigs or cows, and was called "pankreatinum absolutum." But, as is often the case, the first attempt came out lumpy. Powders did not help, even if taken tablespoons. And then it turned out that, passing through the stomach, pancreatic digestive enzymes lose their activity. In the body, they immediately fall in the 12-duodenum, where the environment is alkaline and acidic environment of the stomach simply destroys.

Technology of production of acid-pancreatin was developed three years later. Its authors are Thomas and Franz Wilhelm Weber — Two German chemist from a small company «Chemische FabrikRhenania AG »in Aachen (Germany). In April 1900, they received a patent for preparation Pankreon — coating of pancreatin at 10% tannin to protect from the action of enzymes, gastric juice. It was first medicine to improve the digestive system, the effectiveness of which have proven clinical studies.

Later Pankreon modify, pharmacists improved its formula, made even less susceptible to effects of acid. There are other drugs on the basis of pancreatin.

     The smaller, the better

Modern enzymes to improve digestion, regardless of trade names may be classified:

  • composition: pure pancreatin and pancreatin containing additives such as Bile means;
  • resistance to hydrochloric acid, ideally they should be free to pass through the stomach and be released only in the duodenum 12 at pH 5.5;
  • the diameter of the drug particles: Tablets — greater than 5 mm, caplets — 2 mm caplet microspheres — 1.8-2.0 mm minimicrospheres — 1,0-1,2 mm.

Since all of the latest generation of drugs are resistant to acidic environment of the stomach and contain the necessary enzymes, today when evaluating the performance in the first place there is the size of the drug particles. In order for the drug helps digestion, it should arrive in 12 duodenal ulcer of the stomach at the same time chyme (partially digested food bolus), which it needs to interact. Otherwise, the medication becomes meaningless.

In the process of digestion through the hole in the pylorus, duodenum 12 pass only particles that do not exceed a diameter of 1.5-2.0 mm, and those that are larger, retained in the stomach and are digested by enzymes and hydrochloric acid. As a result, large tablets, improving digestion, "Do not have time." They are too long in the stomach and deactivated. That is the reason for the fact that since the mid XX century chemists pharmacists have begun to develop smaller form of medication to improve digestion.

First, micro-tablets were invented, and microspheres, and in 1993 received a patent for the production of Creon — pancreatin as minimicrospheres. This is the fourth generation of the enzyme preparations. The dosage form of the drug Creon ® is a gelatin capsule, which contains hundreds of tiny minimicrospheres — pancreatin particles coated with an enteric coating. Once in the stomach, the capsule Creon raspadaetsyarastvoryaetsya quickly, releasing minimicrospheres, they are uniformly mixed with the chyme, and with it come in a 12-duodenum, where the containment of each minimicrospheres soluble, enzymes are released and are included in the process of digestion.


Another advantage of the "small forms" Creon is that the surface area of the drug increases as compared with the tablets of more than 10 times. This means that contact with chyme enzymes increased during the same times. Because of this preparation containing minimicrospheres, not only help to quickly get rid of unpleasant feelings with overeating, but also provide a complete digestion of food in patients after removal of the pancreas and in such serious diseases, such as chronic pancreatitis, cystic fibrosis, chronic pancreatitis, etc.

So for a hundred and fifty years pancreatin went from artisanal extraction from porcine pancreas, the benefit of which was highly questionable, to effective high-tech products, which, if you believe the statistics, there is a first aid kit in almost every Russian.


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