Does sterile water expire? 

Does sterile water expire? 

Yes, sterile water does come with an expiry date printed on the packaging. Water itself can not expire. However, the expiry date indicates that water remains sterile only till the given date (1). 

After that, the vacuum created by the packaging may stop working and bacteria from the environment may end up contaminating the water. This makes water not suitable to use for injections. 

What are the dangers associated with the use of expired sterile water? 

If sterile water has expired and has become contaminated, it’s not safe to use it. The bacterial growth contaminating that water will directly enter your bloodstream through an injection. 

This bacterial invasion can become quite dangerous and may give rise to a condition called septicemia, commonly known as blood poisoning or blood infection. 

What to do if you have used expired sterile water? 

If you have consumed expired sterile water and you feel unusual, talk to your healthcare provider. It’s best to check the expiry date before you use sterile water. It’s called ‘sterile’ for a reason and it’s not suitable to use once it loses sterility. 

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U.S. Food and Drug Administration. (2016). Highlights of a label: Sterile Water for Injection, USP in VIAFLEX Plastic Container. For Drug Diluent Use Only. Available from