Agent Name

Creosote, wood

CAS Number


Major Category

Biological Agents


Beechwood creosote; Beechwood creosote (Fagus spp.); Creosote, beechwood; Wood creosote; Creosote; Creosote (wood tar); Creosote (wood); [ChemIDplus] UN2922


Wood Dusts & Extracts


Colorless or yellowish oily refractive liquid with a smoky odor; [Merck Index] A greasy material with a smoky odor and taste; [ChemIDplus] Light yellow viscous liquid; [MSDSonline]


Obtained from wood tar by distillation; [Merck Index] Derived from high temperature treatment of beech, other wood , or resin of the creosote bush and contains cresols and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons; Used as a wood preservative and pesticide; Formerly used as a medicine (disinfectant, laxative, and dermatologic agents; [ChemIDplus] Used as a preservative (wood, cordage, timber, and hessian sacks), froth flotation agent, lubricant for die molds, waterproofing agent, and medication (expectorant, antipyretic, styptic, astringent, antiseptic, local anesthetic (dentistry), and disinfectant); Used in veterinary medicine in poultices, anti-bloat mixtures, parasiticides, and deodorants; [HSDB] Wood creosote is derived from the distillation of beechwood tar; it is yellow, transparent, and chemically distinct from coal tar creosote. [ATSDR ToxProfiles]


A skin, eye, and mucous membrane irritant; Emergency treatment: "Phenol and related agents"; [HSDB] Ingesting herbal remedies containing creosote bush leaves can cause liver and kidney injury. [ATSDR ToxFAQs] A corrosive substance that can cause injury to the skin, eyes, and respiratory tract; Ingestion can cause abdominal pain, vomiting, unconsciousness, and heart failure; [Medisca MSDS]

Exposure Assessment
Explanatory Notes

The Guide in the Emergency Response Guidebook is for "Corrosive liquid, toxic, n.o.s."

Adverse Effects

Hepatotoxin, Secondary


Skin Burns

Links to Other NLM Databases
Health Studies

Human Health Effects from Hazardous Substances Data Bank:

Toxicity Information


Chemical Information

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Biomedical References

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Related Information in HazMap

Industrial Processes with risk of exposure: