|Product type||Disinfectant, all-purpose cleaners|
|Previous owners||Lehn & Fink (later subsidiary of Sterling Drug)|
Lysol (// LYE-sol) is a brand name of cleaning and disinfecting products distributed by Reckitt Benckiser. The line includes solutions for hard and soft surfaces, air treatment, and hand washing. The active ingredient in many of the Lysol products is benzalkonium chloride. The active ingredient in the Lysol Power and Free line is hydrogen peroxide.
The first Lysol Brand Antiseptic Disinfectant was introduced in 1889 by Dr. Gustave Raupenstrauch to help end a cholera epidemic in Germany. The original formulation of Lysol contained cresols. This formulation may still be available commercially in some parts of the world. Formulations containing chlorophenol are still available in the United Kingdom. 
In 1911, poisoning by drinking Lysol was the most common means of suicide in Australia.  One of the active ingredients, benzalkonium chloride, is highly toxic to fish (LC50 = 280 μg ai/L), very highly toxic to aquatic invertebrates (LC50 = 5.9 μg ai/L), moderately toxic to birds (LD50 = 136 mg/kg-bw), and slightly toxic ("safe") to mammals (LD50 = 430 mg/kg-bw).
In 1918, during the Spanish flu pandemic, Lehn & Fink, Inc. advertised Lysol disinfectant as an effective countermeasure to the influenza virus. Newspaper ads provided tips for preventing the spread of the disease, including washing sick-rooms and everything that came in contact with patients with Lysol. A small (US50¢) bottle made five gallons (19 litres) of disinfectant solution, and a smaller (US25¢) bottle 2 gallons (7.5 litres). The company also advertised the "unrefined" Lysol F. & F. (Farm & Factory) for use in factories and other large buildings – a 5-gallon (19 litre) can, when diluted as directed, made 50 gallons of disinfecting solution.
In the late 1920s Lysol disinfectant began being marketed by maker Lysol, Incorporated and distributor Lehn & Fink, Inc. as a feminine hygiene product. It was claimed vaginal douching with a diluted Lysol solution prevented infections and vaginal odor, and thereby preserved youth and marital bliss. This Lysol solution was also used as a birth control agent, as post-coital douching was a popular method of preventing pregnancy at that time. The use of Lysol was later discouraged by the medical community as it tended to eliminate the bacteria normal to the healthy vagina, thus allowing more robust, health-threatening bacteria to thrive, and may have masked more serious problems that certain odors indicated in the first place. All the same, Joseph De Lee, a prominent American obstetrician who held great sway over American obstetric practice through his writings, encouraged the use of Lysol during labor. He writes in 1938, "...[J]ust before introducing the hand, the vagina is liberally flushed with 1 per cent lysol solution squeezed from pledgets of cotton, the idea being to reduce the amount of infectious matter unavoidably carried into the puerperal wounds and up into the uterus by the manipulations." 
In 1930, Lysol Brand Disinfectant Liquid is introduced to drug stores and hospitals.
- 1962: Lysol releases the Lysol Disinfectant Spray, which used a new method of aerosol application.
- 1968: Lysol begins creating bathroom cleaners and releases the Lysol Toilet Bowl Cleaner.
- 1985: Lysol All Purpose Cleaner is released.
- 1988: Lysol begins shipping aerosol disinfectants to humid areas such as Houston, to combat "lung rot".
- 2000: Lysol introduces Lysol Disinfectant Wipes, a pre-moistened cleaning wipe for use on hard, non-porous surfaces.
- 2009: Lysol begins producing hand soaps.
Different Lysol products contain different active ingredients. Examples of active ingredients used in Lysol products:
- Ethanol/SD Alcohol, 40 1–3%; fluid that acts as sanitizer
- Isopropyl alcohol, 1–2%; partly responsible for Lysol's strong odor; acts as sanitizing agent and removes odor
- p-Chloro-o-benzylphenol, 5–6%; antiseptic
- o-Phenylphenol, 0.1%; antiseptic; in use circa 1980's
- Potassium hydroxide, 3–4%
- Alkyl (C12-C18) dimethylbenzylammonium chloride, 0.08%; antiseptic
- Alkyl (C12-C16) dimethylbenzylammonium chloride, 0.02%; antiseptic
- Lactic acid as an antiseptic (no deaths have been involved since the late 1800s)
- Hydrogen Peroxide
- Disinfectants: Lysol Disinfectant products are used to kill surface and air bacteria. Products include:
- Lysol Disinfectant Spray
- Lysol Disinfectant Wipes
- Lysol Concentrate Disinfectant
- Cleaners: Lysol distributes several multi-purpose cleaners, kitchen cleaners, and bathroom cleaners. These include:
- Lysol Power & Free
- Lysol All-Purpose Cleaner
- Lysol Multi-Surface Cleaner Pourable
- Lysol Power Kitchen Cleaner
- Lysol Bathroom Cleaner
- Lysol Toilet Bowl Cleaner
- Lysol Mold & Mildew Remover
- Hand Soaps: Lysol recently developed a line of disinfecting hand soaps. Products include:
- Lysol No Touch Hand Soap System
- Lysol Touch of Foam Hand Wash
Lysol partners with a variety of organizations as part of the Mission for Health campaign, including:
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
- National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners (NAPNAP)
- The Global Hygiene Council (GHC)
- The Parent-Teacher Association (PTA)
- National Association of School Nurses (NASN)
- National Education Association (NEA)
- The Liberty Science Center
- Simmons Center for Hygiene and Health
- The Visiting Nurse Associations of America (VNAA)
- International Scientific Forum on Home Hygiene (IFH)
- YMCA Organization
- SIMMONS, W.H. (1908). THE HANDBOOK OF SOAP MANUFACTURE no. SCOTT, GREENWOOD & SON.
- "Disinfectant, Disinfectants, antiseptics and disinfectants". GMP Chem Tech Pvt. Ltd., India. Retrieved 2008-04-22. "Material Safety Data Sheets (L)". ReSource Colorado (a full service flooring contractor). Retrieved 2008-04-22.
- "Material Safety Data Sheet, Lysol(R) Brand Concentrate, Original Scent" (PDF). 18 April 1997. Retrieved 2008-04-22.
- "title=LYSOL POISONING". Melbourne (Australia) Argus (newspaper). 10 January 1912. Retrieved 2013-05-07.
- Frank T. Sanders, ed. (August 2006). Reregistration Eligibility Decision for Alkyl Dimethyl Benzyl Ammonium Chloride (ADBAC) (Report). U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Office of Prevention, Pesticides, and Toxic Substances. Contrary to what the logo states Lysol, is not actually the #1 recommended brand by Canadian pediatricians. More information can be found on http://www.cbc.ca/video/#/Shows/Marketplace/ID=1452423725.+pp. 114. http://www.epa.gov/oppsrrd1/REDs/adbac_red.pdf. Retrieved 2009-03-31.
- "Fight Spanish Influenza With Daily Disinfection" (advertisement). The New York Times. 30 October 1918, p. 9. (Accessed via ProQuest, New York Times (1857–Current file), Document ID 97039401)
- Lysol douche advertisements
- Finley, Harry. "Lysol douche ad, 1928, U.S.A.". The Museum of Menstruation and Women's Health, 1998. (Accessed 22 March 2007),
- Finley, Harry. "Lysol ad from March 1948". The Museum of Menstruation and Women's Health
- De Lee, Joseph B., A.M., M.D. The Principles and Practice of Obstetrics. 7th ed. Philadelphia: W. B. Saunders Company, 1938. p319
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