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Pyrocatechol (catechol) is a compound found in comfrey and other plants. Pyrocatechol can cause inflammation of the skin when applied locally. Ingestion may cause vomiting, nausea, convulsions, and other symptoms similar to those caused by phenol. Pyrocatechol is used therapeutically as an antiseptic. It is also used in dyeing fur and in photography.

Leung, Albert Y. 1980. Encyclopedia of Common Natural Ingredient used in Food, Drugs and Cosmetics. John Wiley and Sons, N Y. 409 pp.

Windholz, Martha, Susan Budavani, et. al. 1976. The Merck Index. Merck and Co., Inc. New Jersey.