Two weeks after the Food and Drug Administration warned against the use of nine hand sanitizer products due to the potential presence of methanol, the agency added five more brands that tested positive for the toxic substance.
Methanol, sometimes called wood alcohol, is not a suitable ingredient for hand sanitizers and can prove "toxic" when absorbed through the skin or ingested, according to the FDA. The agency warns that "substantial methanol exposure" can result in nausea, vomiting, headache, blurred vision, permanent blindness, seizures, coma, permanent damage to the nervous system or death.
Young children who accidentally ingest methanol and older people who may attempt to drink it as an alcohol substitute are most at risk of poisoning.
The FDA said in a July 2 press release it is aware of cases of adults and children who have ingested hand sanitizer products contaminated with methanol, which has led to blindness, hospitalizations and death.
The FDA's updated list of products:
- Grupo Insoma's Hand Sanitizer Gel Unscented, 70% alcohol (NDC: 75744-0200-3, 75744-0200-4, 75744-0201-5, 75744-0202-1, 75744-0250-1, 75744-0250-2, 75744-0500-1, 75744-1000-1, 75744-1000-3, 75744-1001-1)
- Transliquid Technologies' Mystic Shield Protection Hand Sanitizer (NDC: 75477-435-02, 75477-435-10, 75477-435-12, 75477-435-25, 75477-435-50, 75477-534-10)
- Soluciones Cosmeticas' Bersih Hand Sanitizer Gel Fragrance Free (NDC: 75165-003-02, 75165-004-01, 75165-005-01, 75165-006-01, 75165-008-01, 75165-250-01, 75165-600-01)
- Soluciones Cosmeticas Antiseptic Alcohol 70% Topical Solution Hand Sanitizer (NDC: Not Listed)
- Tropicosmeticos' Britz Hand Sanitizer Ethyl Alcohol 70% (NDC: 76676-402-01, 77676-402-02, 77676-402-03, 77676-402-04, 77676-402-05, 77676-402-06, 77676-402-07, 77676-402-08, 77676-402-09, 77676-402-10, 77676-402-11, 77676-402-12, 77676-402-13, 77676-402-14, 77676-402-16, 77676-402-17, 77676-402-18, 77676-402-19, 77676-402-20)
On June 19, the FDA announced nine hand sanitizers manufactured by Eskbiochem SA de CV in Mexico, were found to contain methanol.
The nine Eskbiochem SA de CV products previously identified by the FDA to potentially contain the presence of methanol are:
- All-Clean Hand Sanitizer (NDC: 74589-002-01)
- Esk Biochem Hand Sanitizer (NDC: 74589-007-01)
- CleanCare NoGerm Advanced Hand Sanitizer 75% Alcohol (NDC: 74589-008-04)
- Lavar 70 Gel Hand Sanitizer (NDC: 74589-006-01)
- The Good Gel Antibacterial Gel Hand Sanitizer (NDC: 74589-010-10)
- CleanCare NoGerm Advanced Hand Sanitizer 80% Alcohol (NDC: 74589-005-03)
- CleanCare NoGerm Advanced Hand Sanitizer 75% Alcohol (NDC: 74589-009-01)
- CleanCare NoGerm Advanced Hand Sanitizer 80% Alcohol (NDC: 74589-003-01)
- Saniderm Advanced Hand Sanitizer (NDC: 74589-001-01)
Federal health agencies recommend hand washing with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If it's not possible to wash your hands, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent ethanol.
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