Skip to main content

Castor Oil

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Jan 17, 2023.

Excipient (pharmacologically inactive substance)

What is it?

As a pharmaceutical grade inactive ingredient, castor oil is used to emulsify and solubilize oils and other water-insoluble substances. A brand name product that contains castor oil is Cremophor and it contains a range of non-ionic polyethoxylated detergents. It was originally developed for use as solubilizers and emulsifiers. This research grade product is intended for use in R&D and development only. Hydrogenated castor oil (castor wax) is also used an extended release agent; stiffening agent; tablet and capsule lubricant. Castor oil has been used as a stimulant laxative to relieve occasional constipation, but it is rarely used today due to gentler and safer alternatives.[1]

List of medications using Castor Oil


  1. [1]Dave RH. Overview of pharmaceutical excipients used in tablets and capsules. Drug Topics (online). Advanstar. 10/24/2008 Accessed 03/27/2014

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.