Excipient (pharmacologically inactive substance)
What is Diethyl Phthalate?
Diethyl phthalate (C12H14O4), or DEP is a diethyl ester of phthalic acid. DEP is used as a plasticizer in consumer goods, including plastic packaging films, cosmetics, solvent for fragrances, a surface lubricant in food and pharmaceutical packaging, and in tubing used for medical purposes. It is a colorless, oily liquid.
There are concerns about the toxicity of phthalates in consumer products and the environment. Exposure to DEP can occur through inhalation, ingestion, eye or skin contact. Some studies suggest little toxicity, but other research has identified reproductive toxicity in animal studies.
According to a document published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for occupational safety, diethyl phthalate has irritant effects on the eyes, skin, and mucous membranes and can lead to central nervous system (CNS) effects in exposed workers. CNS effects only occurred in exposed workers after 6 to 7 years of chronic exposure to phthalates.
 Chemical Information Profile for Diethyl Phthalate. National Toxicology Program National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences National Institutes of Health U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Research Triangle Park, NCNIH. http://ntp.niehs.nih.gov/ntp/htdocs/chem_background/exsumpdf/diethyl_phthalate.pdf
 Autian J. Toxicity and health threats of phthalate esters: review of the literature. Environmental Health Perspectives 1973. 4: 3–25. Accessed March 31, 2012. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1474854/pdf/envhper00501-0008.pdf
Top Medications Containing Diethyl Phthalate
- Amrix 15 mg (Cephalon, Inc.)
- Carbamazepine (Chewable) 100 mg (Taro Pharmaceuticals U.S.A., Inc.)
- Carbamazepine Extended-Release 200 mg (Taro Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd.)
- Cyclobenzaprine Hydrochloride Extended Release 15 mg (Eurand Inc.)
- Cyclobenzaprine Hydrochloride Extended Release 30 mg (Eurand Inc.)
- Embeda morphine 20 mg / naltrexone 0.8 mg (King Pharmaceuticals Inc.)
- Embeda 30 mg / 1.2 mg (King Pharmaceuticals Inc.)
- Embeda morphine 80 mg / naltrexone 3.2 mg (King Pharmaceuticals Inc.)
- Ferrous Sulfate 324 mg (Paddock Laboratories, Inc.)
- Isosorbide Mononitrate Extended Release 30 mg (Torrent Pharmaceuticals Limited)
- Isosorbide Mononitrate Extended Release 60 mg (Torrent Pharmaceuticals Limited)
- Morphine Sulfate Extended Release 30 mg (Watson Laboratories, Inc.)
- Morphine Sulfate Extended Release 80 mg (Watson Laboratories, Inc.)
- Morphine Sulfate Extended-Release 20 mg (Actavis)
- Potassium Chloride Extended-Release 20 mEq (1500 mg) (Watson Laboratories, Inc.)
- Ranitidine Hydrochloride 150 mg (Major Pharmaceuticals Inc.)
- Ranitidine Hydrochloride 150 mg (Wockhardt Limited)
- Sulfasalazine 500 mg (Qualitest Pharmaceuticals Inc.)
- Verapamil Hydrochloride Extended-Release 120 mg (Mylan Pharmaceuticals Inc.)
- Verapamil Hydrochloride Extended-Release 240 mg (Mylan Pharmaceuticals Inc.)