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Medical Term:

benzalkonium chloride

Pronunciation: ben′zal-kō′nē-ŭm klōr′īd


A mixture of alkylbenzyldimethylammonium chlorides in which the alkyls are long-chain compounds (C8 to C18); a surface-active germicide for many pathogenic nonsporulating bacteria and fungi. Aqueous solutions of this agent have a low surface tension, and possess detergent, keratolytic, and emulsifying properties that aid penetration and wetting of tissue surfaces.

© Copyright 2017 Wolters Kluwer. All Rights Reserved. Review Date: Sep 19, 2016.