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Phenylmercuric Acetate

    Synonyms: (Acetato-O)phenylmercury; acetoxyphenylmercury; phenylhydrargyri acetas; phenylmercury acetate; PMA; PMAC; PMAS.

    Description: Phenylmercuric acetate occurs as a white to creamy white, odorless or almost odorless, crystalline powder or as small white prisms or leaflets.

    Chemical Name: (Acetato)phenylmercury

    • Phenylmercuric acetate is used as an alternative antimicrobial preservative to phenylmercuric borate or phenylmercuric nitrate in a limited range of cosmetics (in concentrations not exceeding 0.007% of mercury calculated as the metal) and pharmaceuticals.

    • It may be used in preference to phenylmercuric nitrate owing to its greater solubility. Phenylmercuric acetate is also used as a spermicide

    As for other phenylmercuric salts; see Phenylmercuric Nitrate. Incompatible with: halides; anionic emulsifying agents and suspending agents; tragacanth; starch; talc; sodium metabisulfite; sodium thiosulfate; disodium edetate; silicates; aluminum and other metals; amino acids; ammonia and ammonium salts; sulfur compounds; rubber; and some plastics. Phenylmercuric acetate is reported to be incompatible with cefuroxime and ceftazidime

    Phenylmercuric acetate is mainly used as an antimicrobial preservative in topical pharmaceutical formulations. A number of adverse reactions to mercury-containing preservatives have been reported; see Phenylmercuric Nitrate.

    Observe normal precautions appropriate to the circumstances and quantity of material handled. Phenylmercuric acetate may be irritant to the skin, eyes, and mucous membranes. Eye protection, gloves, and a respirator are recommended. Chronic exposure via any route can lead to central nervous system damage.

    Phenylmercuric borate; phenylmercuric nitrate; thimerosal.