Formulation in Pharmacy Practice   2nd Edition

Lithium Citrate (C6H5Li3,4H2O = 282) is freely soluble in water.
Each g is equivalent to 10.6mmol of Lithium.
Lithium citrate 509mg is equivalent to 200mg lithium carbonate.
Lithium citrate oral solution is commercially available in some countries.


Lithium Citrate Solution 520mg per 5mL
Lithium Citrate 10.4  g
Syrup 30  mL
Water to   100  mL
Expiry:  14 days.
This is arbitrary based on the possibility of microbial contamination.
The shelf life could be extended if a suitable preservative such as parabens is added.

  1. Lithium citrate 520mg is approximately equivalent to 5.4mmol of Li+ or 200mg Lithium carbonate.
  2. Many normal release lithium carbonate tablets disperse in water and a liquid dose can be given in this way.
  3. If lithium citrate is not available a solution can be prepared by adding an excess of citric acid to lithium carbonate powder.  Crushed lithium carbonate tablets can also be used but release of lithium from the tablet formulation may be incomplete.1  The lithium content of such preparations should preferably be assayed.

  1. Blennerhasset J.  Lithium concentration in liquid preparations made from lithium carbonate tablets.
    Aust J Hosp Pharm 1994; 24(5): 439.

Formulation in Pharmacy Practice
2nd Edition