Though hand sanitizers are widely used to prevent the spread of COVID19, some hand sanitizers may prove dangerous.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) discovered an increase in sanitizer products labeled to contain ethanol (ethyl alcohol) may, instead, contain methanol, a possibly fatal ingredient. Below are hand sanitizers to avoid completely. The FDA investigation continues for other problems. In general, use no hand sanitizer products manufactured by Eskbiochem.
What is methanol and what are the effects?
It is also called wood alcohol. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it is present in industrial products as a solvent, pesticide, and alternative fuel source. When exposed to methanol – such as when cleaning hands – nausea and vomiting, headache, seizures, coma, blurred vision, permanent blindness, permanent nervous system damage and even death can result.
Products manufactured by Eskbiochem
These have been recalled:
• Saniderm Advanced Hand Sanitizer which comes in 1-liter plastic bottles labeled “Made in Mexico” and “Produced by: Eskbiochem SA de CV” distributed by Saniderm Products and UVT.
- The UVT hand sanitizer is labeled with lot number 0530 and an expiration date of 04/2022.
- The Saniderm Products hand sanitizer is labeled with lot number 53131626 and “Manufactured on April/1/20.”
• ITECH 361’s All Clean Hand Sanitizer, Moisturizer and Disinfectant: UPC code 628055370130.
• Transliquid Technologies’ Mystic Shield Protection hand sanitizer: NDC numbers include 75477-435-02, 75477-435-10, 75477-435-12, 75477-435-25, 75477-435-50 and 75477-534-10.
These Eskbiochem products, to date, are not removed from the marketplace. Products to avoid include:
- 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)
The FDA also tested the following products and found they contained methanol or were “purportedly made at the same facility as products in which FDA has tested and confirmed methanol contamination.”
- Grupo Insoma’s Hand Sanitizer Gel Unscented 70% Alcohol: NDC numbers include 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 and 75744-1001-1.
- Soluciones Cosmeticas’ Bersih Hand Sanitizer Gel Fragrance Free: NDC numbers include 75165-003-02, 75165-004-01, 75165-005-01, 75165-006-01, 75165-008-01, 75165-250-01 and 75165-600-01.
- Soluciones Cosmeticas’ Antiseptic Alcohol 70% Topical Solution hand sanitizer: No NDC numbers listed.
- Tropicosmeticos’ Britz Hand Sanitizer Ethyl Alcohol 70%: NCD numbers include 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 and 77676-402-20.
What should you do if you used or possess any of these products?
It is critical to get immediate treatment if you, or someone you know, was exposed to a hand sanitizer containing methanol. This can allow possible reversal of the toxic effects of methanol poisoning, but must be done as soon as possible.
Children who accidentally swallow these sanitizers are at greater risk, as is anyone who drinks these as a substitute for alcohol (ethanol.)
To dispose of these products, put them in hazardous waste containers immediately and take to a disposal site. Do not put them in recycling. Do not flush or pour them down a drain.
Remember, though some hand sanitizers may prove dangerous, the best sanitizing defense is to wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.