Summary

• Carbon disulphide is potentially very toxic

• It is a potent neurotoxin and is narcotic at high concentrations

• Toxicity from carbon disulphide is primarily by inhalation, but toxicity following ingestion and dermal exposure can occur

• The target organs are the central nervous system, cardiovascular system, peripheral nervous system, liver, eyes and skin

• Carbon disulphide neurotoxicity manifests in three ways: encephalopathy, peripheral and cranial nerve dysfunction, and movement abnormalities

• Carbon disulphide causes skin irritation and potentially severe chemical burns

• Coronary heart disease occurs more frequently in workers exposed to carbon disulphide

• Chronic carbon disulphide exposure causes retinopathy

• Carbon disulphide can adversely effect both male and female reproductive function; one study reported birth defects in humans

• It not thought to be carcinogenic

When pure, carbon disulphide is a colourless liquid with a sweet ether-like odour. The crude technical product is a yellowish liquid with a disagreeable odour, which has been described as similar to that of decaying radishes.

CS2, carbon disulfide, carbon bisulphide, carbon bisulfide, dithiocarbonic anhydride, carbon sulphide, carbon sulfide

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