FDA Alert: Hand Sanitizer Methanol Contamination

July 17, 2020
Grace Halsey
Grace Halsey

Hand sanitizer products contaminated with methyl alcohol have caused serious adverse events, including hospitalization, blindness, and death.

A Medwatch alert on July 16 reinforced the Food and Drug Administration's June and July warnings of the risk of methanol contamination in hand sanitizers. The products, now in widespread use to protect against infection with the SARS-CoV2 virus, are labeled to contain ethanol (ethyl alcohol) but have tested positive for the toxic methanol (methyl alcohol). The Agency is aware of children and adults ingesting the contaminated products and of significant adverse events, including hospitalization, blindness, and death.

The short slide show below highlights the scope of FDA concerns with use and abuse of the adulterated products which, while being recalled, may still be available at retail outlets or online. Please use the information to alert your patients and office staff.