Acute High Dose Toxicity of 1,4-Dioxane Following Occupational Exposure - A Clinical and an Autopsy Perspective


  • King Edward Memorial Hospital and Seth Gordhandas Sunderdas Medical College, Department of Pathology, Mumbai, India


1,4-Dioxane is a cyclic ether with a molecular formula of C4H8O2. It is used as a solvent and degreasing agent in industries like textile, paints, varnishes, oil, dyes etc. Occupational exposure can occur in the industrial workers. Absorption of 1,4-Dioxane usually occurs by inhalation, oral or dermal routes. Exposure to high doses is associated with severe kidney and liver damage. We report a fatal case of acute high dose toxicity of 1,4-Dioxane following occupational exposure. The deceased was exposed to the chemical while washing large industrial tanks containing 1,4-Dioxane. Autopsy examination revealed extensive renal cortical necrosis, centrilobular hepatic necrosis, pulmonary oedema and intra-alveolar haemorrhages. This case had medico-legal implications and a lawsuit was filed by the family of the deceased to get compensation for death due to occupational exposure.


1,4-Dioxane, Renal Cortical Necrosis, Centrilobular Hepatic Necrosis.

Subject Discipline

Pharmacy and Pharmacology

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