Medical Definition of Phenol

  • Medical Author:
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

Phenol: 1. A poisonous corrosive compound obtained by the distillation of coal tar that, in dilute solution, is an antimicrobial agent. Also called carbolic acid. 2. A generic term for any compound similar in structure to phenol (an organic compound with one or more hydroxyl groups attached to an aromatic or carbon ring).

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Reviewed on 12/11/2018

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