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Colour of Medicines and Children’s Acceptability? A Systematic Literature Review of Children’s Perceptions about Colours of Oral Dosage Forms

Alessandrini, Elisa; Gonakova, Milena; Batchelor, Hannah; Gizurarson, Sveinbjorn; Iurian, Sonia; Klein, Sandra; Schaufelberger, Daniel; ... Tuleu, Catherine; + view all (2023) Colour of Medicines and Children’s Acceptability? A Systematic Literature Review of Children’s Perceptions about Colours of Oral Dosage Forms. Pharmaceutics , 15 (7) , Article 1992. 10.3390/pharmaceutics15071992. Green open access

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Abstract

The colour of a product plays an important role in consumer experiences, and in the context of pharmaceutical products, this could potentially affect a patient’s expectations, behaviours, and adherence. Several studies have been conducted on adults, but little is known about children’s opinions on colours of medicines and to what extent medicines’ colour affects their acceptability. To address this gap, a systematic search in PubMed, Scopus, MEDLINE, and Web of Science was conducted. Two authors independently screened the titles, abstracts, and references of all articles and selected studies conducted on children (0–18 years old), assessing children’s preferences or opinions about colour of oral dosage forms as either a primary or secondary objective or as an anecdotal record. A total of 989 publications were identified and, after screening, 18 publications were included in the review. Red and pink were the most liked colours and there appeared to be a relationship between the colour of a medicine and expected taste/flavour. The review also highlighted a scarcity of information, usually collected as an anecdotal record. Several gaps in the current knowledge were underlined, emphasizing the need of patient-centred studies to understand if the use of certain colours can improve or worsen the acceptability of a paediatric medicine. This will help inform pharmaceutical manufacturers and regulators on the role and need of colours in children’s medicines beyond quality purposes.

Type: Article
Title: Colour of Medicines and Children’s Acceptability? A Systematic Literature Review of Children’s Perceptions about Colours of Oral Dosage Forms
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.3390/pharmaceutics15071992
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.3390/pharmaceutics15071992
Language: English
Additional information: © 2023 by the Authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
Keywords: colour; oral medicines; children; preferences
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > UCL School of Pharmacy
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > UCL School of Pharmacy > Pharmaceutics
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10173972
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