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Esfenvalerate — toxicity, side effects, diseases and environmental impacts

Thursday, December 21, 2017 by

Esfenvalerate goes by trade names such as S-fenvalerate, Ectrin, Sumiflower, Pydrin, Sanmarton, Sumifly, and Sumitick. It is considered a restricted use pesticide because of possible negative effects to aquatic environments.

Pure esfenvalerate appears as colorless crystals; its technical product exists as an amber liquid.

List of known side effects

Esfenvalerate is highly poisonous to humans. Almost 600 cases of poisoning have been reported between the years 1982 and 1988 in India due to a mere improper handling of the chemical. When one is poisoned by esfenvalerate, one is bound to feel dizziness, burning, and itching.

Esfenvalerate exposure also causes unneccesary and uncomfortable side effects that include a general sense of weakness and splitting headaches.

Esfenvalerate can be considered toxic to birds. Toxicity value for bobwhite quails is at 1,313 milligrams per kilogram (mg/kg) while toxicity value for mallard ducks is at 2,250 mg/kg.

Esfenvalerate is very toxic to aquatic organisms. Toxicity value for bluegills is at 0.0003 milligrams per liter (mg/l); 0.0003 mg/l for rainbow trout; 0.001 mg/l for carp; 0.0002 mg/l for killfish; and 0.001 mg/l for Daphnia magna, an invertebrate.

Esfenvalerate is also very fatal to bees. The good news is, since most contaminated bees quickly die in the field before they can return to the hive, the entire brood is not in any danger of being exposed to the chemical due to other bees, they only get to do so via direct contact with the insecticide spray.

Body systems harmed by esfenvalerate

Esfenvalerate is bad for the ocular system. Direct contact with the eyes can cause blurred vision.

Esfenvalerate is bad for the respiratory system. It causes tightness in the chest.

Esfenvalerate is bad for the muscular system. It gives rise to convulsions, which are sudden movements of the limbs or body, caused by involuntary contraction of muscles and are linked to brain disorders such as epilepsy. It also causes muscle incoordination and tremors.

Esfenvalerate is bad for the nervous system. It causes damage to the brain and its vital organs that make optimal functioning of this body system possible.

Esfenvalerate is bad for the digestive system. It can cause drastic weight changes to people who have been exposed to it. It also causes nausea and vomiting.

Esfenvalerate is bad for the reproductive system. Even though studies cannot as yet prove its toxicity to fetuses, pregnant women who get exposed to the chemical often report poisoning.

Items that can contain esfenvalerate

Esfenvalerate is contained in pesticide products that include Asana XL, Halmark, and Sumi-alfa.

How to avoid esfenvalerate

It is important that workers who handle esfenvalerate on a semi-regular basis wear proper respiratory protection while working. Whenever possible, they should use a self-contained breathing apparatus. They should also invest in protective clothing such as a long shirt and pants, gloves, and socks and shoes.

Where to learn more


Esfenvalerate can be considered toxic to birds.

Esfenvalerate is very toxic to aquatic organisms.

Esfenvalerate is also very fatal to bees.

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