Benzalkonium Chloride

Benzalkonium Chloride Brand Names

Ionax | Neosporin Wound Cleanser | Pronto Plus | RevitaDERM | Zephiran

What is Benzalkonium Chloride

Benzalkonium chloride (BAK) is a topical antiseptic agent. It is used as an antiseptic of the skin, mucous membranes, and wounds.

Benzalkonium chloride can also be used preoperatively for preparation of the skin.

Other uses include preservation of ophthalmic solutions and as an irrigation for the eye, body cavities, bladder, urethra, and for vaginal douching. BAK is a rapidly acting, cationic, surface-active, antiinfective agent with a moderately long duration of action.

This drug was approved by the FDA in 1947.


  1. burns
  2. Escherichia coli
  3. herpes labialis
  4. Salmonella typhi
  5. skin abrasion
  6. skin antisepsis
  7. Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA)
  8. Staphylococcus aureus (MSSA)
  9. Streptococcus pyogenes (group A beta-hemolytic streptococci)
  10. urologic irrigation
  11. wound management

Side Effects

  • contact dermatitis
  • skin irritation
  • vaginal irritation

Monitoring Parameters

  • laboratory monitoring not necessary


  • accidental exposure
  • breast-feeding
  • neonates
  • occlusive dressing
  • ocular exposure
  • pregnancy


  • Fluocinolone
  • Fluorescein
  • Hylan G-F 20
  • Povidone-Iodine
  • Silver Nitrate
  • Sodium Chloride

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