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Investigation into the efficiency of various indigestion tablets.

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Introduction

Investigation into the efficiency of various indigestion tablets Planning Indigestion is a general term used to describe discomfort or pain in the upper abdomen or chest, which is sometimes experienced while our bodies digest the food we eat. A better and more scientific term for indigestion is dyspepsia. Indigestion is caused by too much acid in the stomach. Indigestion tablets contain bases, which neutralise the excessive hydrochloric acid. The three indigestion tablets that I used all contained calcium carbonate as the active ingredient. Setlers is however the only indigestion tablet with just that active ingredient. Both Rennie and Bisodol also contained magnesium carbonate and, additionally, Bisodol also contained sodium bicarbonate. When the indigestion tablets come in contact with the HCl, the following chemical reactions will occur: - Setlers: CaCO3 + 2HCl --> CaCl2 + CO2 + H2O - Rennie: CaCO3 + 2HCl --> CaCl2 + CO2 + H2O MgCO3 + 2HCl --> MgCl2 + CO2 + H2O - Bisodol: CaCO3 + 2HCl --> CaCl2 + CO2 + H2O MgCO3 + 2HCl --> MgCl2 + CO2 + H2O NaHCO3 + HCl --> NaCl + CO2 + H2O Aim My aim is to determine which of the three indigestion tablets is the most effective. I will try to determine this by means of titration, in order to calculate the masses of the active ingredients present in the tablets. Variables to control and vary In order to make this a fair experiment, I must keep most things constant. Firstly, the concentration of HCl which the indigestion tablet must neutralise has to remain the same. In this case, this has to be 0.1M, which is the same as in the stomach because I am trying to simulate the hydrochloric acid in the stomach. Secondly, the volume of deionised water in which I dissolve the tablet must remain the same, so that all solutions are of the same concentration. ...read more.

Middle

In the conical flask I will put my suspension, about which I want to find something out. By adding an indicator and slowly dripping the HCl (acid) into the suspension (base) and continuing until the solution has neutralised, I will know how much HCl was needed. Using the equation for the reaction that was taking place, I can extract the number of moles relatively reacting with the acid. From that, I can use the formulae n = m / mm and n = v x c to work out the mass of the active ingredients. Obtaining Evidence All results Volume of HCl required (cm3) to change colour to orange (before changes *) 1 2 3 (4) Avg. Setlers 50+ 23.0 22.4 22.8 N\A 22.7 Rennie - 28.3 27.0 28.3 28.1 28.2 Bisodol - 26.3 27.9 27.7 27.8 27.8 0.25g powder added to 35cm3 3 drops of methyl orange 0.1M HCl * = changing to 0.25g of tablet I have not used the results that were crossed out because they were not in concordancy with the rest. I had to do a fourth try on those indigestion tablets. I have also not used those for calculating the average. Good results The following table clearly shows the results that I used for my averages. All three tries are within 0.5 cm3 of each other. Volume of HCl required (cm3) to change colour to orange 1 2 3 Avg. Setlers 23.0 22.5 22.8 22.7 Rennie 28.3 28.3 28.1 28.2 Bisodol 27.9 27.7 27.8 27.8 0.25g powder added to cm3 3 drops of methyl orange 0.1M HCl * = changing to 0.25g of tablet Analysis From the results, without doing any calculations, we can say that 'Rennie' is the most effective indigestion tablet. The concentration of calcium carbonate and heavy magnesium carbonate is the greatest of the three, as it took the most HCl to neutralise. Rennie has the greatest concentration of active ingredients and will therefore cure indigestion most effectively. ...read more.

Conclusion

Also, my indicator did not completely cover the neutralisation point. It changes colour at pH 4 instead of pH 7, which alters the results slightly. Some of the deionised water may have stuck to the inside of the conical flask, making the solution or suspension slightly more concentrated. Also, the carbon dioxide in the air will make the deionised water slightly acidic but, this will cause only minute differences and can therefore be disregarded. To improve my results, it would be better to find a way in which to clearly distinguish the amount of different active ingredients present, instead of reading it from the label. Also, if I would be able to do this experiment again, I would take a mass of powder to one decimal place (e.g. 0.2g instead of 0.25g) as the scales that we used were less accurate on the second decimal place. Obviously, it would have been better to use real stomach acid to neutralise the tablet, as it would be better to completely simulate what is going on inside the stomach. Impurities and other chemicals that would influence the results will then also be taken into consideration. In order to obtain results sufficient to support a scientific solution, it would have been better to try more samples of each tablet, in order to create a more accurate average. It would have been even better to let a computer recognise whether the solution is neutral. Also, it would be very beneficial to have an apparatus that would keep the solution or suspension stirred at all times, in order to make sure complete distribution of the acid, alkali and indicator. Overall, I believe that the experiment has been a success and, that I have done everything I could in order to make these results as accurate as possible. We used the greatest attention to detail throughout the experiment, were very critical and eliminated freak-results where necessary and, I think that the results confirm that. - Oscar van den Bosch - Chemistry 23/11/2002 Oscar van den Bosch 10G 'Investigation into the efficiency of various indigestion tablets' Page 1 of 10 23/11/2002 ...read more.

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