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Hand Sanitizer

FDA Expands List of Hand Sanitizers That Contain Toxic Methanol


There are now 75 hand sanitizers on the Food and Drug Administration’s warning list. Experts say you should call your healthcare provider if you use any of them.


The Food and Drug Administration has now issued warnings about 75 hand sanitizer products.


Officials say the products contain high levels of toxic methanol, which can cause blindness and even death if ingested.


Symptoms of methanol poisoning include nausea, dizziness, weakness, and visual disturbances.


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The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has expanded its list of hand sanitizers the agency says consumers should avoid.


The agency now lists 75 hand sanitizers it says are tainted with methanol. Some of the products have already been recalled.


The hand sanitizers include brands sold at Sam’s Club and BJ’s Wholesale Club.


In late June, the agency issued a warning against purchasing and using nine hand sanitizer brands-Trusted Source made in Mexico.


Agency officials said the hand sanitizers contained as much as 81 percent toxic methanol, also known as wood alcohol. The chemical can cause blindness and death if ingested.


“Methanol can dehydrate the skin, causing dry skin, and can result in dermatitis to the affected region. The main problem with methanol is that it is absorbed through the skin and can result in toxic levels of this chemical,” Dr. Michael Dannenberg, the chair of dermatology at Huntington Hospital in Pasadena, California, told Healthline.


“Methanol toxicity can result from ingesting or from absorption through the lungs (i.e., inhaling the methanol fumes) or absorption through the skin. Absorption through the skin can be a problem for anyone, but young children are at the highest risk of this,” he said.


Symptoms-Trusted Source of methanol poisoning include nausea, vomiting, dizziness, headaches, weakness, visual disturbances, and loss of consciousness.


The fumes from methanol are also flammable, another potential danger.


Here are the original nine brands the FDA warns against. Two of them have the same name but different lot numbers:


All-Clean Hand Sanitizer


Esk Biochem Hand Sanitizer


CleanCare NoGerm Advanced Hand Sanitizer 75% Alcohol


Lavar 70 Gel Hand Sanitizer


The Good Gel Antibacterial Gel Hand Sanitizer


CleanCare NoGerm Advanced Hand Sanitizer 75% Alcohol


CleanCare NoGerm Advanced Hand Sanitizer 80% Alcohol (lot number 74589-005-03)


CleanCare NoGerm Advanced Hand Sanitizer 80% Alcohol (lot number 74589-003-01)


Saniderm Advanced Hand Sanitizer


If you do have one of these items in your home, stop using them immediately and dispose of them, but don’t flush or pour the products down the drain, the FDA says.


Instead, “dispose of them immediately in appropriate hazardous waste containers,” the agency recommends.


The importance of hand sanitizer safety was highlighted in data released in late July.


The American Association of Poison Control Centers reports that there has been a 59 percent increase in the number of hand sanitizer exposure cases reported to poison control centers so far this year.


The overwhelming majority of those cases involve children under 6 years of age.