he purpose of this study was to investigate the physico-chemical characteristics of sucralfate humid gel dried by microwaves, in relation to the residual water content. Differential scanning calorimetry (DSC) allowed for the determination of the water state in sucralfate samples. Fourier-transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy was used to monitor the changes in sucralfate gel structure induced by the microwave drying. A boundary value of total water content for sucralfate gel samples was found at 42% (w/w). Below this value only bound water was present, whereas above this value, the increase in total water was due to free water. In the physical form of gel, the strength of the coordination between sulfate anions and the positively charged aluminum hydroxide was dependent on the residual water content. The study of the sedimentation behavior of water suspensions prepared with dried sucralfate allowed for the evaluation of the retention of gel properties. We found that the microwave drying process affected the sedimentation of sucralfate dried gel suspensions independent of the residual water content: when suspensions were prepared from sucralfate dried gel powders containing more than 42% (w/w) of residual water, the sedimentation ratio was higher than 0.9. The non-gel powder suspension showed a sedimentation ratio of 0.68 ± 0.02, whereas the sucralfate humid gel suspension did not sediment.
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