Stability of an extemporaneously prepared thalidomide suspension

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The short-term physical and chemical stability of an oral suspension of thalidomide 20 mg/mL was studied.


An oral suspension of thalidomide 20 mg/mL was prepared by emptying the contents of 12 100-mg thalidomide capsules into a glass mortar; 30 mL of Ora-Plus and 30 mL of Ora-Sweet were mixed and added to the thalidomide powder to make a final volume of 60 mL. Three identical samples of the formulation were prepared and placed in 2-oz amber plastic bottles with child-resistant caps and stored under refrigeration (3–5 °C). A 1-mL sample was withdrawn from each of the three samples with a micropipette immediately after preparation and at 7, 14, 21, 28, and 35 days. After further dilution to an expected concentration of 20 μg/mL with acetonitrile–methanol and then dilution with mobile phase, the samples were assayed in duplicate using stability-indicating high-performance liquid chromatography. Stability was determined by evaluating the percentage of the initial concentration remaining at each time point; stability was defined as the retention of at least 90% of the initial concentration of thalidomide.


At least 92% of the initial thalidomide concentration remained throughout the 35-day study period. There were no detectable changes in color, odor, or pH and no visible microbial growth in any sample.


An extemporaneously prepared suspension of thalidomide 20 mg/mL in a 1:1 mixture of Ora-Plus and Ora-Sweet was stable for at least 35 days when stored in 2-oz amber plastic bottles under refrigeration.

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