Toxicant and Disease Database

The CHE Toxicant and Disease Database is a searchable database that summarizes links between chemical contaminants and approximately 180 human diseases or conditions. Diseases and or toxicants can be viewed by utilizing the search options below. See a full description of the database and our methodology.

See also our compilation of other Databases and Resources

For questions or comments about the database, please contact us through our Contact form.

ethylene oxide

CAS number: 75-21-8

Diseases linked to this toxicant    Grouped by strength of evidence

Strong Evidence

Adult-onset leukemias

Contact dermatitis - irritant

Fetotoxicity (miscarriage / spontaneous abortion, stillbirth)

Peripheral neuropathy

Good Evidence

Asthma - allergen, sensitizer


Leukoderma (hypopigmentation)

Preterm delivery

Psychiatric disturbances (disorientation, hallucinations, psychosis, delirium, paranoias, anxiety/depression, emotional lability, mood changes, euphoria)

Pulmonary edema

Skin cancer (non-melanoma)

Stomach cancer

Limited Evidence

Abnormal sperm (morphology, motility, and sperm count)

Brain cancer - adult

Breast cancer

Congenital malformations - general

Hodgkin's disease (lymphoma)

Low birth weight / small for gestational age / intra-uterine growth retardation

Lung cancer


Pancreatic cancer

Reduced fertility - male (infertility and subfertility)

Skeletal malformations

Uterine cancer


Hruska KS, Furth PA, Seifer DB, Sharara FI, Flaws JA. Environmental factors in infertility. Clinical Obstetrics and Gynecology. 2000 Dec;43(4):821-9.

International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC). Agents Classified by the IARC Monographs. Accessed in 2010.

Klaassen CD, Ed. Casarett and Doull's Toxicology: The Basic Science of Poisons, 6th Edition. New York: McGraw-Hill 2001.

LaDou J, Ed. Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 3rd Edition. New York: Lange Medical/McGraw-Hill Company, 2004.

Leikauf GD. Hazardous air pollutants and asthma. Environmental Health Perspectives. 2002 Aug;110 Suppl 4:505-26.

Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment. Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986 (California Proposition 65).

Rom WM. Environmental and Occupational Medicine, 3rd Edition. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins Publishers, 1998.

NOTE: Not all the references are currently available, but they will be added as soon as possible. If you need a reference and are unable to find it, please contact us through our contact form