CAS ID #: 7723-14-0
Affected Organ Systems: Dermal (Skin), Ocular (Eyes), Reproductive (Producing Children), Respiratory (From the Nose to the Lungs)
Cancer Effects: None
Chemical Classification: Metals/Elements (the simplest forms of matter)
Summary: White phosphorus is a colorless, white, or yellow waxy solid with a garlic-like odor. It does not occur naturally, but is manufactured from phosphate rocks. White phosphorus reacts rapidly with oxygen, easily catching fire at temperatures 10 to 15 degrees above room temperature. White phosphorus is used by the military in various types of ammunition, and to produce smoke for concealing troop movements and identifying targets. It is also used by industry to produce phosphoric acid and other chemicals for use in fertilizers, food additives, and cleaning compounds. Small amounts of white phosphorus were used in the past in pesticides and fireworks.
Toxicological and Health Professionals
Succinctly characterizes the toxicologic and adverse health effects information for a hazardous substance.
The MRL is an estimate of the daily human exposure to a hazardous substance that is likely to be without appreciable risk of adverse, non-cancer health effects over a specified duration of exposure. The information in this MRL serves as a screening tool to help public health professionals decide where to look more closely to evaluate possible risk of adverse health effects from human exposure.
- Page last reviewed: March 3, 2011
- Page last updated: March 3, 2011
- Content source: Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry