Scabies major health problem. Currently, the most frequently used antiscabetic substance is a lotion containing 1% of the pesticide, gamma benzene hexachloride (lindane). Because of its widespread use in humans and because of some anecdotal communications suggesting that toxic reactions may have been observed in children treated for scabies with gamma benzene hexachloride, we felt it would be of interest to review toxicity of the substance and examine the indications and methods currently recommended for its use.
Gamma benzene hexachloride is the y isomer of 1,2,3,4,5,6-hexachlorocyclohexane (HCCH). It is the chlorine analogue of muco-inositol.1 It is a nonaromatic compound whose physical properties are given in the Figure.
Gamma benzene hexachloride is present in several products sold under a number of trade names. Although gamma benzene hexachloride was probably first synthesized by Michael
Faraday in 1825, the pure alpha, beta, gamma, and delta isomers were not prepared until 1943 by
Solomon LM, Fahrner L, West DP. Gamma Benzene Hexachloride ToxicityA Review. Arch Dermatol. 1977;113(3):353-357. doi:10.1001/archderm.1977.01640030099018