Diethyl Ether

CAS RN:60-29-7

Health Effects

0.2.1 SUMMARY OF EXPOSURE
  • 0.2.1.1 ACUTE EXPOSURE
    • A) Ingestion poisonings are similar to ethanol overdoses except for a more rapid onset and shorter duration of symptoms. Inhalation may result in dizziness, giddiness, euphoria, and CNS depression. Deliberate abuse has been reported with repeated exposures producing ether jags. Deaths from acute industrial exposure are rare. Death due to respiratory depression may result from severe and continued exposure.
    • B) Ethyl ether is a severe eye and moderate skin irritant.
0.2.3 VITAL SIGNS
  • 0.2.3.1 ACUTE EXPOSURE
    • A) Irregular breathing, hypothermia, and bradycardia have been noted as early effects in industrial exposures.
0.2.4 HEENT
  • 0.2.4.1 ACUTE EXPOSURE
    • A) Excessive salivation has been reported. Prolonged exposure to high vapor concentrations may cause eye injury.
0.2.5 CARDIOVASCULAR
  • 0.2.5.1 ACUTE EXPOSURE
    • A) Bradycardia has been reported in industrial exposures.
0.2.6 RESPIRATORY
  • 0.2.6.1 ACUTE EXPOSURE
    • A) Ether is irritating to mucous membranes. Cough and laryngeal spasm have been reported.
    • B) Death has been reported due to respiratory depression.
0.2.7 NEUROLOGIC
  • 0.2.7.1 ACUTE EXPOSURE
    • A) Exhaustion, dizziness, excitation, headache, CNS depression, and seizures have occurred.
  • 0.2.7.2 CHRONIC EXPOSURE
    • A) DIZZINESS
      • 1) Chronic exposure may cause dizziness.
    • B) HEADACHE
      • 1) Chronic exposure may cause headache.
    • C) CNS STIMULATION
      • 1) Excitation may occur from repeated exposure.
0.2.8 GASTROINTESTINAL
  • 0.2.8.1 ACUTE EXPOSURE
    • A) Ether is irritating to mucous membranes and vomiting might be expected after ingestion. Anorexia has been reported in patients with deliberate ether abuse.
  • 0.2.8.2 CHRONIC EXPOSURE
    • A) ANOREXIA
      • 1) Anorexia has been reported following chronic exposure.
    • B) CONSTIPATION
      • 1) Constipation has been reported.
0.2.9 HEPATIC
  • 0.2.9.1 ACUTE EXPOSURE
    • A) When used in anesthesia, liver changes are generally mild and of short duration. When ether is given to patients with preexisting hepatic injury, hepatotoxicity is more likely.
0.2.10 GENITOURINARY
  • 0.2.10.1 ACUTE EXPOSURE
    • A) Albuminuria and nephritis have been reported as transient complications in ether intoxication.
    • B) Severe cystitis has resulted from instillation of ether into the urinary bladder.
    • C) Animal experiments demonstrated degenerative changes in the epithelium of the convoluted tubules of the kidneys.
0.2.13 HEMATOLOGIC
  • 0.2.13.1 ACUTE EXPOSURE
    • A) Polycythemia has been reported after ether exposure and thrombophlebitis has developed in patients treated intravenously with a 15 percent solution.
0.2.14 DERMATOLOGIC
  • 0.2.14.1 ACUTE EXPOSURE
    • A) Ether will defat the skin with multiple exposures.
    • B) Ulcers have been reported following intramuscular injections of ether.
    • C) Intra-arterial injection has caused severe tissue edema, pain, cyanosis, ecchymosis, skin necrosis, gangrene, and amputation.
0.2.15 MUSCULOSKELETAL
  • 0.2.15.1 ACUTE EXPOSURE
    • A) The same level of relaxation is not produced by other anesthetic agents.
0.2.16 ENDOCRINE
  • 0.2.16.1 ACUTE EXPOSURE
    • A) Hyperglycemia is common following anesthesia with blood glucose level increases ranging from 27 to 62 milligrams/deciliter.
0.2.20 REPRODUCTIVE HAZARDS
  • A) Ether readily passes the placental barrier. Concentrations in the fetus are expected to be the same as in the maternal blood.
0.2.21 CARCINOGENICITY
  • 0.2.21.1 IARC CATEGORY
    • A) IARC Carcinogenicity Ratings for CAS60-29-7 (International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), 2016; International Agency for Research on Cancer, 2015; IARC Working Group on the Evaluation of Carcinogenic Risks to Humans, 2010; IARC Working Group on the Evaluation of Carcinogenic Risks to Humans, 2010a; IARC Working Group on the Evaluation of Carcinogenic Risks to Humans, 2008; IARC Working Group on the Evaluation of Carcinogenic Risks to Humans, 2007; IARC Working Group on the Evaluation of Carcinogenic Risks to Humans, 2006; IARC, 2004):
      • 1) Not Listed
  • 0.2.21.2 HUMAN OVERVIEW
    • A) At the time of this review, no data were available to assess the carcinogenic potential of this agent.
0.2.22 GENOTOXICITY
  • A) Ethyl ether induced DNA repair in E. coli, DNA inhibition in mouse embryos, and was positive in other mutation test systems in hamster fibroblasts.
  • B) One occupational cytogenetics study reported elevated levels of sister chromatid exchanges and chromosome aberrations in laboratory technicians exposed to ether and other chemicals, although ethyl ether did not induce sister chromatid exchanges in cultured Chinese hamster ovary cells or mice.
0.2.23 OTHER
  • 0.2.23.1 ACUTE EXPOSURE
    • A) Deliberate abuse has been reported with repeated exposures producing ether jags. Death from acute industrial exposure is rare.
    • B) Ethyl ether is moderately toxic to humans by ingestion. It is poisonous experimentally by the subcutaneous route. It is moderately toxic by intraperitoneal and intravenous routes and mildly toxic by inhalation. Olfactory changes resulted from human inhalation.
    • C) Ethyl ether is not dangerously reactive, but is HIGHLY FLAMMABLE.
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