What is it?
Benzalkonium chloride is a chemical used as a cleanser, antiseptic, and preservative. It is especially prevalent in topical eye drop solutions, both over-the-counter and prescription.

How can I avoid it?
Since benzalkonium chloride is widely used in the health care field, you should inform all your health care providers of this allergy. You should read the ingredients listed on all eye preparations, skin creams, and cosmetics. Contact may also occur in the industrial workplace, so reading Safety Data Sheets (SDS) may help identify potential sources of exposure. Although it is not always the case, individuals with contact allergy to benzalkonium chloride may also be allergic to certain systemic medications chemically related to it including:
  • Tetraethylammonium chloride
  • Decamethonium bromide
  • Hexadimethrine bromide
  • Algaecides for roof tiles, swimming pools, and greenhouses
  • Band-aids with antiseptics on them
  • Cleaners for floor and hard surfaces
  • Cold-sterilization solution for medical and dental instruments
  • Eye products
    • Solutions including artificial tears
    • Medications
    • Contact lens solutions
  • Industrial use in agriculture, fabric, dyeing, and metallurgy
  • Injectable medications
  • Mouthwash, lozenges, and medications for mouth and throat
  • Nasal sprays
  • Plaster of paris
  • Personal care products
    • Baby products
    • Cleansing products (creams, lotions, liquids, and pads)
    • Cosmetics
    • Deodorants
    • Disinfectant wipes
    • First aid sprays
    • Foot powders
    • Hand sanitizers
    • Manicuring preparations
    • Mouthwash
    • Personal cleansing products
    • Shampoos
    • Skin creams and medications
    • Skin disinfectants/Antiseptics
    • Spermicidal
    • Sunscreens
    • Throat lozenges
    • Wipes
    • Wound/Burn/Ulcer treatment preparations
Other names for Benzalkonium Chloride:
  • Alkyl Dimethyl Benzyl Ammonium Chloride
  • BAC
  • BAK
  • Benirol
  • BTC
  • BZK
  • Cequartyl
  • Drapolene
  • Dropolex
  • Enuclene
  • Gesminol
  • Germitol
  • Osuan
  • Paralkan
  • Roccal
  • Rodalon
  • Zephiran
  • Zephiran chloride

How safe is it?

Hang tight. We're thinking.