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Cresol Basic information
Cresol Chemical Properties
  • Melting point:-1--2°C
  • Boiling point:88-94°C
  • Density 1.04
  • refractive index 1.5410 to 1.5440
  • Flash point:82°C
  • storage temp. Store at R.T.
  • OdorSweet, tarry.
  • Water Solubility 1.932 g/100 mL
  • Merck 14,2579
  • Exposure limitsTLV-TWA (skin) for all isomers, 5 ppm (~22 mg/m3 ) (ACGIH, MSHA, and OSHA), 10-hour TWA 2.3 ppm (~10 mg/m3 ) (NIOSH), IDLH 250 ppm (NIOSH).
  • Stability:Stable. Combustible. Incompatible with strong oxidizing agents.
  • CAS DataBase Reference1319-77-3(CAS DataBase Reference)
  • EPA Substance Registry SystemCresol (1319-77-3)
Safety Information
Cresol Usage And Synthesis
  • Chemical PropertiesCresol,a clear amber to red liquid, also known as cresylic acid, methylphenol, and tricresol,is a mixture of three isomers of cresol derived from coaltar and is used in making plastics, ore flotation, refining petroleum, and as a strong antiseptic. Orthocresol is a color less solid with a melting point of 30 °C(86 OF) that is soluble in alcohol,but only slightly soluble in water. It is used in making disinfectants and as a plasticizer. Metacresol is a colorless liquid used in the manufacture of photographic developers,printing inks, and paint removers.It is also used as a leather preservative.The least soluble isomer, paracresol, is a colorless solid and is used in the production of dyes and pharmaceuticals.
  • Chemical PropertiesCresol is a mixture of the three isomeric cresols, o-, m-, and p-cresol. Cresols are slightly soluble in water. m-Isomer: Colorless or yellow liquid with characteristic odor.
  • Chemical PropertiesCresol consists of a mixture of cresol isomers, predominantly mcresol,and other phenols obtained from coaltar or petroleum.It is a colorless,yellowish to pale brownish-yellow,or pink-colored liquid, with a characteristic odor similar to phenol but more tarlike. An aqueous solution has a pungent taste.
  • UsesDisinfectant, phenolic resins, tricresyl phosphate, ore flotation, textile scouring agent, organic intermediate, manufacture of salicylaldehyde, coumarin, and herbicides, surfactant, synthetic food flavors (para isomer only).
  • UsesCresol is used in disinfectants and fumigants,in the manufacture of synthetic resins, inphotographic developers and explosives.
  • DefinitionA mixture of isomers obtained from coal tar or petroleum.
  • Production MethodsCresol may be obtained from coal tar or prepared synthetically by either sulfonation or oxidation of toluene.
  • General DescriptionColorless to yellow liquids with a tarry odor. Flash point 178°F. Insoluble in water. Density 8.7 lb / gal. Poisonous by ingestion and skin absorption and corrosive to skin.
  • Air & Water ReactionsInsoluble in water.
  • Reactivity ProfileMixing CRESOL in equal molar portions with any of the following substances in a closed container caused the temperature and pressure to increase: chlorosulfonic acid, nitric acid, oleum, [NFPA 1991].
  • HazardIrritant, corrosive to skin and mucous membranes, absorbed via skin. Questionable carcinogen.
  • Health HazardLIQUID: Will burn skin and eyes. Harmful if swallowed.
  • Health HazardThe toxic actions of cresol are similar tothose of phenol. The para-isomer is somewhat more toxic than the other two isomers.The toxic symptoms are weakness, confu-sion, depression of the central nervous system, dyspnea, and respiratory failure. It isan irritant to the eyes and skin. Skin con-tact can cause burn and dermatitis. Chroniceffects are gastrointestinal disorders, nervousdisorders, tremor, confusion, skin eruptions,oliguria, jaundice, and liver damage. SkinLD50 values in rats for o-, m-, and p-phenolsare 620, 1100, and 750 mg/kg, respectively.
    Dietz and Mulligan (1988a,b) have investigated the subchronic toxicity of meta- andpara-cresols in Sprague-Dawley rats after13 weeks of oral gavage. There was noadverse effects from a dose of 50 mg/kg/day.High dose levels of 150 mg/kg/day producedcentral nervous system depression and reduction of body weight gain. p-Cresol was foundto be hepatotoxic and nephrotoxic, inducinga mild anemic effect. The acute toxicity ofmethyl phenols did not show any relationshipto the number or position of methyl groupson the phenol nucleus. In an acute toxicitystudy on Daphnia magna, Devillers (1988)found cresols to be more toxic than phenol,xylenols, and trimethylphenols.
  • Fire HazardCombustible. POISONOUS GASES MAY BE PRODUCED IN FIRE. Flammable toxic vapors given off in a fire. Sealed closed containers can build up pressure if exposed to heat.
  • Chemical ReactivityReactivity with Water No reaction; Reactivity with Common Materials: No reaction; Stability During Transport: Stable; Neutralizing Agents for Acids and Caustics: Not pertinent; Polymerization: Not pertinent; Inhibitor of Polymerization: Not pertinent.
  • Pharmaceutical ApplicationsCresol is used at 0.15-0.3% concentration as an antimicrobial preservative in intramuscular, intradermal, and subcutaneous injectable pharmaceutical formulations. It is also used as a preservative in some topical formulations and as a disinfectant. Cresol is not suitable as a preservative for preparations that are to be freeze-dried.
  • SafetyReports of adverse reactions to cresol are generally associated with the use of either the bulk material or cresol-based disinfectants, which may contain up to 50% cresol, rather than for its use as a preservative. However, a recent case of cutaneous hypersensitivity reaction to the m-cresol component of an insulin formulation detected via intradermal and patch testing has been reported.
    Cresol is similar to phenol although it is less caustic and toxic. However, cresol is sufficiently caustic to be unsuitable for skin and wound disinfection. In studies in rabbits, cresol was found to be metabolized and excreted primarily as the glucuronide.
    A patient has survived ingestion of 12g of cresol though with severe adverse effects.
    LD50 (mouse, oral): 0.76g/kg
    LD50 (rabbit, skin): 2g/kg
    LD50 (rat, oral): 1.45g/kg
  • Potential ExposureCresol is used as a disinfectant and fumigant; as an ore flotation agent, and as an intermediate in the manufacture of chemicals, dyes, plastics, and antioxidants. A mixture of isomers is generally used; the concentrations of the components are determined by the source of the cresol.
  • storageCresol and aqueous cresol solutions darken in color with age and on exposure to air and light. Cresol should be stored in a well-closed container, protected from light, in a cool, dry place.
  • ShippingUN2076 Cresols, liquid, Hazard class: 6.1; Labels: 6.1-Poisonous materials, 8-Corrosive material. UN3455 Cresols, solid, Hazard class: 6.1; Labels: 6.1- Poisonous materials, 8-Corrosive material.
  • IncompatibilitiesVapors may form explosive mixture with air. Incompatible with strong acids; oxidizers, alkalies, aliphatic amines; amides, chlorosulfonic acid; oleum. Decomposes on heating, producing strong acids and bases, causing fire and explosion hazard. Liquid attacks some plastics and rubber. Attacks many metals.
  • IncompatibilitiesCresol has been reported to be incompatible with chlorpromazine. Antimicrobial activity is reduced in the presence of nonionic surfactants.
  • Waste DisposalWastewaters may be subjected to biological treatment. Concentrations may be further reduced by ozone treatment. High concentration wastes may be destroyed in special waste incinerators.
  • Regulatory StatusIncluded in the FDA Inactive Ingredients Database (IM, IV, intradermal, and SC injections). Included in parenteral medicines licensed in the UK. Included in the Canadian List of Acceptable Non-medicinal Ingredients.
Cresol Preparation Products And Raw materials
Cresol(1319-77-3)Related Product Information
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