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Kekulé, skeletal formula of chloroxylenol
Systematic IUPAC name
88-04-0 YesY
ChemSpider 21106017 YesY
EC Number 201-793-8
Jmol interactive 3D Image
KEGG D03473 YesY
MeSH chloroxylenol
PubChem 2723
RTECS number ZE6850000
UNII 0F32U78V2Q YesY
Molar mass 156.61 g·mol−1
Melting point 114 to 116 °C (237 to 241 °F; 387 to 389 K)
log P 3.377
Acidity (pKa) 9.76
Basicity (pKb) 4.24
ATC code D08AE05
GHS pictograms The exclamation-mark pictogram in the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS)
GHS signal word WARNING
H302, H315, H317, H319
P280, P305+351+338
Harmful Xn
R-phrases R22, R36/38, R43
S-phrases (S2), S24, S37
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).
Infobox references

Chloroxylenol (4-chloro-3,5-dimethylphenol) is a broad spectrum antimicrobial chemical compound used to control bacteria, algae, fungi and virus. It is used in hospitals and households for disinfection and sanitation. It is also commonly used in antibacterial soaps, wound-cleansing applications and household antiseptics such as Dettol liquid (to which it contributes its distinctive odor), cream and ointments.[2] Studies have shown an antimicrobial activity which is enhanced by additives. Its antibacterial action is due to disruption of cell membrane potentials.[3] Developed in Europe in the 1920s and used in the United States since the 1950s, Chloroxylenol is one of the most mature antimicrobial agents.[4]

Chloroxylenol is not significantly toxic to humans, is practically non-toxic to birds, moderately toxic to freshwater invertebrates and highly toxic to fish and cats and should not be used around them.[5] It is a mild skin irritant and may trigger allergic reactions in some individuals.


  1. ^ "chloroxylenol – Compound Summary". PubChem Compound. USA: National Center for Biotechnology Information. 25 March 2005. Identification and Related Records. Retrieved 7 October 2011. 
  2. ^ Ascenzi, Joseph M. (1996). "Chloroxylenol: an old-new antimicrobial". Handbook of disinfectants and antiseptics. New York: M. Dekker. ISBN 978-0-8247-9524-5. 
  3. ^ Aly, R; Malbach, H (1988). "Comparative antibacterial efficacy of a 2-minute surgical scrub with chlorhexidine gluconate, povidone-iodine, and chloroxylenol sponge-brushes". American Journal of Infection Control 16 (4): 173–7. doi:10.1016/0196-6553(88)90029-6. PMID 3189943. 
  4. ^ Larson, E (1986). "An approach for selection of health care personnel handwashing agents". Infect Control 7: 419–424. 
  5. ^ Dettol liquid at