2,4-Dichlorobenzenemethanol also known as dichlorobenzyl alcohol (DCBA), in combination with amylmetacresol is indicated for the symptomatic relief of acute sore throat and postoperative sore throat. It is categorized by the FDA as an inactive ingredient for approved drug products. DCBA is also used in cosmetics as a preservative and as an antimicrobial in skin gels, creams, lotions, deodorants, and shampoos. The use of dichlorobenzyl alcohol has been related to its antibacterial, antiviral, and local anesthetic properties. The local anesthetic action of dichlorobenzyl alcohol is thought to be due to a reduced sodium channel blockade; both DCBA (and amylmetacresol) reversibly block depolarization-induced ion channels in a way similar to local anesthetics. The antiseptic mechanism of action of dichlorobenzyl alcohol is not fully understood.
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