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  A vial (also phial) is a relatively small glass vessel or bottle, especially used to store medication as liquids, powders or in other forms like capsules. They can also be sample vessels e.g. for use in autosampler devices in analytical chromatography[1].

The glass can be colourless or coloured, clear or amber. There are different types of closure systems, e.g. Screw vials (closed with screw cap or dropper/pipette), Lip vials (closed with cork or plastic stopper), Crimp vials (closed with a rubber stopper and a metal cap)[2]. A vial can have a tubular shape or a bottle-like shape with a neck. The bottom is usually flat unlike test tubes which have usually a rounded bottom. Modern vials can be made of plastic (e.g. polypropylene). These can have other closure systems like a flip-top/snap cap.


The words "vial"/"phial" come from the Greek word "phiale"[3] meaning "a broad flat container[4]." Latin: "phiala", Late Latin: "fiola", Middle English: "fiole" and "viole".

See also


  • Glass Vials, Glass Bottles (Web). Retrieved on 2007-09-15.
  • Capitol Vial Inc. (Web). Retrieved on 2007-09-15.
  1. ^ Autosampler vials (Web). Retrieved on 2007-09-15.
  2. ^ Cappers (Web). Retrieved on 2007-09-15.
  3. ^ Vial at Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary (Web). Retrieved on 2007-09-15.
  4. ^ Phiale (Web). Retrieved on 2007-09-15.
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Vial". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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