British Columbia

Consumers warned of toxic ingredient found in hand sanitizer products

The B.C. Centre for Disease Control is advising people not to use hand sanitizer products manufactured by Eskbiochem SA de CV in Mexico, due to the potential presence of methanol (wood alcohol).

Warning follows FDA advisory issued last week

Consumers are being advised not to use hand sanitizer products made by a Mexican company and sold under various brand names, due to the potential presence of methanol. (Koen Van Weel/ANP/AFP via Getty Images)

The B.C. Centre for Disease Control is advising people not to use hand sanitizer products manufactured by Eskbiochem SA de CV in Mexico, due to the potential presence of methanol (wood alcohol), a substance that is toxic if ingested. 

Methanol, when absorbed through the skin or ingested can cause nausea, vomiting, headache, blurred vision, permanent blindness, seizures, coma, and is potentially life threatening, according to the BCCDC.

People most at risk of ingesting hand sanitizer include children, people with dementia, and people using it as a substitute for alcohol.

The warning follows a similar advisory from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration last week about the possible presence of methanol in products from the same company. 

The list of recalled products by the FDA 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)

Consumers are advised to dispose of the product immediately in hazardous waste containers, rather than flushing or pouring the product down the drain.

There have been no reported illnesses connected to the products in B.C. but the province's Drug and Poison Information Centre has received four calls from people reporting they had products from the recall list.

If you think someone has swallowed any amount of hand sanitizer, BCCDC advises you to call your local poison control centre or the B.C. Drug and Poison Information Centre at 1-800-567-8911.

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