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This mixture is also called tricresol, or cresylic acid. Get exclusive access to content from our 1768 First Edition with your subscription. No human or animal studies have shown harmful effects from cresols on reproduction. Author of. Corrections? They are a widely occurring natural and manufactured group of aromatic organic compounds, which are categorized as phenols (sometimes called phenolics). All content on this website, including dictionary, thesaurus, literature, geography, and other reference data is for informational purposes only. Occupational Safety and Health Administration, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, "Making carbon nanotubes as usable as common plastics: Researchers discover that cresols disperse carbon nanotubes at unprecedentedly high concentrations", "Additive-free carbon nanotube dispersions, pastes, gels, and doughs in cresols", Documentation for Immediately Dangerous To Life or Health Concentrations (IDLHs) - Cresol (o, m, p isomers), https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Cresol&oldid=984355000, Short description is different from Wikidata, Articles with unsourced statements from December 2017, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, mixture of cresols (tricresol): [1319-77-3], This page was last edited on 19 October 2020, at 17:50. Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. m-Cresol is also used in making photographic developer and explosives. Another method entails methylation of phenol with methanol over a solid acid catalyst, often comprising magnesium oxide or alumina. All three isomers are very toxic, and in high concentrations they can be absorbed in fatal amounts through the skin. They are a widely occurring natural and manufactured group of aromatic organic compounds, which are categorized as phenols (sometimes called phenolics). Professor of Chemistry, Whitman College, Walla Walla, Washington. The rest is produced by hydrolysis of chlorotoluenes or the related sulfonates. These forms occur separately or as a mixture, which can also be called cresol or more specifically, tricresol. The cresols are obtained from coal tar or petroleum, usually as a mixture of the three stereoisomers (molecules with the same number and type of atoms but with unique atom arrangements). The cresols are strong germicides, and in low concentrations they are effective disinfectants and antiseptics. They are also used in low concentrations in sheep-dips (disinfectants often containing insecticides and pesticides). Formocresol: 48.5% formaldehyde, 48.5% cresol, 3% glycerine. Like other types of phenols, they are slowly oxidized by long exposure to air, and the impurities often give samples of cresols a yellowish to brownis… By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. [6], Most recently, cresols have been used to create a breakthrough in manufacturing carbon nanotubes at scale that are separated and not twisted, without additional chemicals that change the surface properties of the nanotubes.[7][8]. Cresols give creosote its antibacterial and insecticidal properties, as well as its toxicity and its ability to irritate bare skin. Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article. It is not known what the effects are from long-term ingestion or skin contact with low levels of cresols. The cresols are strong germicides, and in low concentrations they are effective disinfectants and antiseptics. It is a colourless, viscous liquid that is used as an intermediate in the production of other chemicals. Skin contact with high levels of cresols can burn the skin and damage the kidneys, liver, blood, brain, and lungs. [citation needed] About half of the world's supply of cresols are extracted from coal tar. Omissions? As phenol derivatives, cresols can be used in phenol-formaldehyde resins. Updates? The name cresol reflects their structure, being phenols, and their traditional source, creosote. a phenol from coal or wood tar; a mixture of isomeric cresol from coal tar or petroleum is used as a disinfectant and in making synthetic resins. Cresols have an odor characteristic to that of other simple phenols, reminiscent to some of a "coal tar" smell. When cresols are inhaled, ingested, or applied to the skin, they can be very harmful. https://medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/cresol. Cresols (also hydroxytoluene) are organic compounds which are methylphenols. These were used until roughly 1925 when phenol, The novolak resin was synthesized by acid catalyzed condensation of meta- and para-, These molding compounds are mainly composed of silica filler ([tilde]70 wt%), an epoxy, Dictionary, Encyclopedia and Thesaurus - The Free Dictionary, the webmaster's page for free fun content, Aerobic Batch Degradation of Cresol by Newly Isolated Pseudomonas monteilii Cr13, Consumption of bait solutions by Anastrepha suspensa, Phenolic resins in rubber compounds: applications and new developments, Phenolic, non-staining antioxidants - a guide to select the right product, Novel Strategies for Novolak Resin Fractionation: Consequences for Advanced Photoresist Applications, Chemorheological Analysis of an Epoxy-Novolac Molding Compound. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). Depending on the temperature, cresols can be solid or liquid because they have melting points not far from room temperature. Buckley's Formocresol: 19% formaldehyde, 35% cresol, 17.5% gylcerine. Our latest podcast episode features popular TED speaker Mara Mintzer. meta-Cresol, also 3-methylphenol, is an organic compound with the formula CH3C6H4(OH). Cresols (also hydroxytoluene) are organic compounds which are methylphenols. In its chemical structure, a molecule of cresol has a methyl group substituted onto the ring of phenol. https://www.britannica.com/science/cresol. Short-term and long-term studies with animals have shown similar effects from exposure to cresols. Temperatures above 300 °C are typical. [5][6], Cresols are precursors or synthetic intermediates to other compounds and materials, including plastics, pesticides, pharmaceuticals, and dyes. There are three forms (isomers) of cresol: ortho-cresol (o-cresol), meta-cresol (m-cresol), and para-cresol (p-cresol). Breathing high levels of cresols for a short time results in irritation of the nose and throat. Aside from these effects, very little is known about the effects of breathing cresols, for example, at lower levels over longer times. Depending on the temperature, cresols can be solid or liquid because they have melting points not far from room temperature. It is a derivative of phenol and is an isomer of p-cresol and o-cresol. Effects observed in people include irritation and burning of skin, eyes, mouth, and throat; abdominal pain and vomiting; heart damage; anemia; liver and kidney damage; facial paralysis; coma; and death. [9], Group of chemical compounds, types of methylphenol. Cresol (C7H8O), any of the three methylphenols with the same molecular formula but having different structures: ortho- (o-) cresol, meta- (m-) cresol, and para- (p-) cresol. They are also used in low concentrations in sheep-dips (disinfectants often containing insecticides and pesticides). The cresols are important components of creosote, a wood preservative produced as a by-product of coal tar distillation. A mixture of the three isomeric methyl phenols, Thus, a composition containing epoxy resins, a. Acute poisoning may result in rapid circulatory collapse; chronic poisoning may produce gastrointestinal symptoms, vertigo, skin rashes, jaundice, and uremia. The cresols are important components of creosote, a wood preservative produced as a by-product of coal tar distillation. Helmut Fiegein "Cresols and Xylenols" in Ullmann's Encyclopedia of Industrial Chemistry" 2007; Wiley-VCH, Weinheim. Anisole converts to cresols under these conditions. This information should not be considered complete, up to date, and is not intended to be used in place of a visit, consultation, or advice of a legal, medical, or any other professional. p-Cresol can be converted to butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT), an important antioxidant in foods. Like other types of phenols, they are slowly oxidized by long exposure to air, and the impurities often give samples of cresols a yellowish to brownish red tint. Ingesting high levels results in kidney problems, mouth and throat burns, abdominal pain, vomiting, and effects on the blood and nervous system. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has set a permissible exposure limit at 5 ppm (22 mg/m3) over an eight-hour time-weighted average, while the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health recommends a limit of 2.3 ppm (10 mg/m3). a phenol from coal or wood tar; a mixture of isomeric cresol from coal tar or petroleum is used as a disinfectant and in making synthetic resins. Acute poisoning may result in rapid circulatory collapse; chronic poisoning may produce gastrointestinal symptoms, vertigo, skin rashes, jaundice, and uremia.

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