Zinc sulfate (medical use)

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Zinc sulfate
Zinc sulfate.png
Chemical model
Clinical data
Trade names Solvazinc, Micro-Zn, others
AHFS/Drugs.com Consumer Drug Information
  • US: A (No risk in human studies) and C
Routes of
by mouth, intravenous
Drug class mineral supplement
ATC code
CAS Number
PubChem CID
Chemical and physical data
Formula ZnSO4
Molar mass 161.47
3D model (JSmol)

Zinc sulfate is used medically as a dietary supplement.[1] Specifically it is used to treat zinc deficiency and to prevention the conditions in those at high risk,[1] this includes use together with oral rehydration therapy for children who have diarrhea.[2] General use is not recommended,[1] it may be taken by mouth or by injection into a vein.[1]

Side effects may include abdominal pain, vomiting, headache, and feeling tired.[2] While normal doses are deemed safe in pregnancy and breastfeeding, the safety of larger doses is unclear.[3] Greater care should be taken in those with kidney problems.[2] Zinc is an essential mineral in people as well as other animals.[4]

The medical use of zinc sulfate began as early as the 1600s,[5] it is on the World Health Organization's List of Essential Medicines, the most effective and safe medicines needed in a health system.[6] Zinc sulfate is available as a generic medication and over the counter,[1][3] the wholesale cost in the developing world is about 0.01 to 18 USD per day.[7] In the United Kingdom ten days of treatment costs the NHS about 4.32 pounds.[1]

Medical uses[edit]

The use of zinc sulfate supplements together with oral rehydration therapy decreases the number of bowel movements and the time until the children returns to normal in diarrhea,[2] it general use in this situation is thus recommended by the World Health Organization.[2]

Zinc sulfate is also an important part of parenteral nutrition.[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g British national formulary : BNF 69 (69 ed.). British Medical Association. 2015. p. 700. ISBN 9780857111562. 
  2. ^ a b c d e WHO Model Formulary 2008 (PDF). World Health Organization. 2009. pp. 349–351. ISBN 9789241547659. Archived (PDF) from the original on 13 December 2016. Retrieved 8 January 2017. 
  3. ^ a b "Zinc sulfate Use During Pregnancy | Drugs.com". www.drugs.com. Archived from the original on 16 September 2016. Retrieved 15 January 2017. 
  4. ^ Council, National Research; Studies, Division on Earth and Life; Resources, Board on Agriculture and Natural; Animals, Committee on Minerals and Toxic Substances in Diets and Water for (2006). Mineral Tolerance of Animals: Second Revised Edition, 2005. National Academies Press. p. 420. ISBN 9780309096546. Archived from the original on 2017-01-16. 
  5. ^ Sneader, Walter (2005). Drug Discovery: A History. John Wiley & Sons. p. 62. ISBN 9780471899792. Archived from the original on 2017-01-16. 
  6. ^ "WHO Model List of Essential Medicines (19th List)" (PDF). World Health Organization. April 2015. Archived (PDF) from the original on 13 December 2016. Retrieved 8 December 2016. 
  7. ^ "Zinc Sulfate". International Drug Price Indicator Guide. Retrieved 8 December 2016.