Dichlorodiethylsulfide

(BANM, USAN, pINNM)
Dichlorodiethylsulfide Chemical formula

Chemical information

Dichlorodiethylsulphide; Gas mostaza; Iperita; Mustard Gas; Sulfur Mustard; Sulfuro de dicloroetileno; Yellow Cross Liquid; Yperite. Bis(2-chloroethyl)sulphide.
Chemical formula: C4H8Cl2S = 159.1.
CAS — 505-60-2.

Profile

Dichlorodiethylsulfide was developed for use in chemical warfare and has even more severe vesicant and irritant properties than its nitrogen analogue, chlormethine. It was formerly used topically in the treatment of psoriasis. Most patients exposed to dichlorodiethylsulfide recover largely or completely and only a small proportion will have severe long-term eye or lung damage,12,13 although death from respiratory, renal, and bone-marrow failure may occur.11 A combination of 1% phenol and 1% menthol applied topically produced significant relief of pruritus compared with placebo in a randomised study of 80 war veterans with chronic skin lesions following exposure to dichlorodiethylsulfide.14 Eleven fishermen who accidentally retrieved corroded and leaking gas shells containing dichlorodiethylsulfide from underwater dumps, presented with very inflamed skin, especially in the axillary and genitofemoral regions, yellow blisters on the hands and legs, painful irritation of the eyes, and transient blindness. Two developed pulmonary oedema.15 There was evidence of a mutagenic effect and in view of the increased risk of lung cancer in soldiers and workers exposed to the gas it is reasonable to assume that fishermen heavily exposed to dichlorodiethylsulfide also have an increased cancer risk.
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13. Khateri S, et al. Incidence of lung, eye, and skin lesions as late complications in 34 000 Iranians with wartime exposure to mustard agent. J Occup Environ Med 2003; 45: 1136–43
14. Panahi Y, et al. Phenol and menthol in the treatment of chronic skin lesions following mustard gas exposure. Singapore Med J 2007; 48: 392–5
15. Wulf HC, et al. Sister chromatid exchanges in fishermen exposed to leaking mustard gas shells. Lancet 1985; i: 690–1.
Published May 08, 2019.