Xylene: An overview of its health hazards and preventive measures

J Oral Maxillofac Pathol. 2010 Jan;14(1):1-5. doi: 10.4103/0973-029X.64299.


Xylene is an aromatic hydrocarbon known for its wide usage in tissue processing, staining and cover slipping in the histology laboratory. The hazards of xylene are well documented, making it a potential occupational hazard for the histopathological technicians. As every other profession became cautious of the occupational hazards, the very speciality that identifies the illnesses became one of the last to become aware and remedy its own hazards. This review article aims to discuss the toxicity of xylene and safety measures to counteract the hazards and enlists the pros and cons of using various substitutes that claim to be much safer, better and faster.

Keywords: Toxicity of xylene; xylene; xylene substitutes.