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First Aid for Lanolin Poisoning

Last updated Feb. 27, 2018

Approved by: Maulik P. Purohit MD MPH

Lanolin Poisoning is the accidental or intentional intake of any product containing the compound.


What is Lanolin Poisoning?

  • Lanolin is a waxy substance that is used in cosmetics, lubricants, shoe polish, and various industrial products. It is derived from domestic sheep and is also known as wool wax 
  • Lanolin Poisoning is the accidental or intentional intake of any product containing the compound
  • The condition is diagnosed based upon the clinical history, combination of signs and symptoms, and additional tests (that may include, in some cases, radiological studies and laboratory tests)

Lanolin Poisoning may be also referred to variously as the following:

  • Glossylan Poisoning
  • Golden Dawn Poisoning
  • Lanolin Toxicity
  • Sparklelan Poisoning
  • Wool Alcohol Poisoning
  • Wool Wax Poisoning

What are the Causes of Lanolin Poisoning?

  • Lanolin Poisoning is caused by the ingestion of lanolin or lanolin-based product
  • This intake could be accidental, or in some cases intentional, to bring self-harm
  • Lanolin may be found in a wide variety of products including cosmetics, medicines, topical creams and lotions, baby oil, and eye care products

Note: The compound can interact with other prescribed or non-prescribed medications in the body. Such interactions may enhance the therapeutic effects of other medications being taken, resulting in undesired side effects.

What are the Signs and Symptoms of Lanolin Poisoning?

The signs and symptoms can vary from one individual to another. It may be mild in some and severe in others. The signs and symptoms of Lanolin Poisoning may include:

  • Nausea, vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Skin rashes with inflammation and redness
  • Obstruction of the bowel, if large quantities are consumed

How is First Aid administered for Lanolin Poisoning?

First Aid tips for Lanolin Poisoning:

  • Call 911 or your local emergency help number, for emergency assistance
  • Call the Poison Control Center at 1-800-222-1222 (or your local poison control center) for further instructions
  • Provide them with information such as the compound taken, quantity and time of ingestion, age, weight and general health status of affected individual
  • Confirm that the airways are protected; also, ensure breathing and the presence of pulse
  • Clean the mouth to remove any remaining pieces; wipe mouth with a wet cloth
  • Unless instructed by a healthcare professional, DO NOT induce vomiting in the affected individual
  • Take individual to emergency room (ER) for further treatment
  • Always try to take the compound bottle/container to the ER

The emergency medical health professional might perform the following steps towards treating the condition:

  • Medically manage symptoms
  • Administer laxatives for elimination of the substance from the body
  • Administer fluids by an intravenous drip line

Who should administer First Aid for Lanolin Poisoning?

First aid for Lanolin Poisoning is administered by healthcare professionals.

  • The individual who is affected, or someone near, should call 911 for emergency assistance (or the local emergency number)
  • They should also call the poison control center at 1-800-222-1222 (or the local poison control center) and follow instructions

What is the Prognosis of Lanolin Poisoning?

  • The prognosis of Lanolin Poisoning is dependent on the amount of substance consumed, time between consumption and treatment, severity of the symptoms, as well as general health status of the patient
  • If the individual can recover from the symptoms, with appropriate medication and early support, the outcome is generally good. In most cases, the condition is mild, since lanolin is not very toxic

In general, toxicities are common situations in the emergency departments. A majority of the cases are often not fatal, when appropriate treatment is given.

How can Lanolin Poisoning be Prevented?

Lanolin Poisoning can be prevented by:

  • Always following instructions for usage of any health or cosmetic products
  • Keeping cosmetics, medications, and other healthcare products out of reach of children in child-proof containers
  • Keeping any poisonous/hazardous chemicals and other materials out of children’s reach
  • Being aware of basic first aid steps in case of an emergency (such as inadvertent poisoning)

What are certain Crucial Steps to be followed?

  • Call 911 (or your local emergency number) for emergency assistance, if symptoms are life-threatening
  • Call Poison Control Center at 1-800-222-1222 (or the local poison control center) and follow the recommend steps
  • It would be helpful if the following information is readily available:
    • Type, amount and time of consumption of the substance
    • Age and weight of the individual
    • And, the overall health status of the individual

What are some Useful Resources for Additional Information?


References and Information Sources used for the Article:


Helpful Peer-Reviewed Medical Articles:


Reviewed and Approved by a member of the DoveMed Editorial Board
First uploaded: July 9, 2017
Last updated: Feb. 27, 2018