Vaselinum album

Authors: Prof. Dr. med. Peter Altmeyer, Prof. Dr. med. Martina Bacharach-Buhles

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Last updated on: 29.10.2020

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Vaseline; White vaseline; White vaseline Ph.Eur.

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White petroleum jelly(see below) is a mixture of purified, predominantly saturated hydrocarbons from the oil refinery.

Vaselinum album is largely decolorized by a special treatment (use of sulfuric acid, bleaching earth and activated carbon). This purification step is not required for yellow vaseline (Vaselinum flavum).

White vaseline melts between 38 and 58°C.

The commercially available white vaseline consists of 70 to 90% of a liquid component (strongly branched paraffins and olefins) and a solid component (10-30% crystalline and microcrystalline paraffin components).

White vaseline is practically non-sensitizing.

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Active pharmaceutical ingredients can be incorporated well. The active agents are mostly present as suspended solid particles and not in dissolved form and from this basis they can easily penetrate into the skin. The macerating effect of vaseline supports this process.

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