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1,4-Dioxane

Hazardous Waste Site Health Risk Assessment Program

  •  877-798-2772
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    Mailing Address

    Mailing Address 

    4052 Bald Cypress Way, Bin A-08 

    Tallahassee, FL 32399-1710 

What is 1,4-dioxane?

1,4-Dioxane (p-dioxane or dioxane) is a man-made synthetic industrial chemical used as a stabilizer in many solvents and cleaners. It is used in the manufacturing of some dyes, adhesives, and lubricants. It has also been found as an impurity in some consumer products, such as antifreeze, shampoos, laundry detergents, and cosmetics.

How might exposure to 1,4-dioxane occur?

  • Drinking water containing 1,4-dioxane.
  • Breathing ambient air containing 1,4-dioxane (higher in workplaces which make products which contain this chemical).
  • Contact with water or soaps containing 1,4-dioxane while showering or washing.

How can 1,4-dioxane affect my health?

Health effects from drinking high levels of 1,4-dioxane can include liver damage, kidney damage, and certain cancers.

The type and severity of health effects associated with exposure to a particular chemical depends on a number of factors including:

  • What concentration of the chemical was someone exposed to?
  • How long did the exposure last?
  • What was the route of exposure (drinking, breathing, bathing)?

 The health effect of a chemical exposure can range widely from one person to the next. A number of personal factors also contribute to the health effects. These include age, gender, and other existing health conditions and lifestyle habits.

Can 1,4-dioxane cause cancer?

The U.S. EPA has determined that 1,4-dioxane is a likely human carcinogen. Animal studies imply that drinking water with high levels of 1,4-dioxane may lead to cancers in the liver, kidneys, nasal passages, or breast.

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