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Persistence. Imipenem is degraded in the environment.

Bioaccumulation. Imipenem has low potential for bioaccumulation.

Toxicity. Imipenem has very high chronic toxicity.

Risk. The use of imipenem (sales data Sweden 2021) has been considered to result in insignificant environmental risk.


This summary information comes from Fass.se.

Detailed information

Fass environmental information

Fass environmental information for imipenem from Recarbrio (cilastatin, imipenem (vattenfri), relebactam) from MSD (downloaded 2023-12-15).


Persistence: "DT50 (total system) = 1.49–2 days. [...] Since DT50 < 32 days for the total system, the phrase “Imipenem is degraded in the environment” is thus chosen."

Bioaccumulation: Log Kow < - 1 at pH 7.

Toxicity: There are data for 3 trophic levels, most sensitive Blue-Green Algae (Anabaena flos-aquae) NOEC 2 microg/L.


PEC/PNEC is based on sales data in Sweden in year 2021. PEC/PNEC = 0.029 which gives the risk insignificant.

Assessment report

Assessment report for Recarbrio 15 October 2020, EMA/CHMP/538608/2020.

"The environmental risk assessment for imipenem and cilastatin are on-going and will be submitted in 4Q 2020. [...] The CHMP reiterated that the Environmental risk assessment of imipenem and cilastatin needs to be submitted no later than the end of Q4 2020." No such information has been found when searching the EMA website (2023-12-19).

Other information

For antibiotics in general, it is recommended that these pharmaceuticals are used as restrictively as possible without jeopardise the patient's health.

Author: Health and Medical Care Administration, Region Stockholm