Hand Sanitizers From Mexico Likely to Contain Methanol, FDA Warns
By David Doolittle

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Physician practices and other facilities should be aware that alcohol-based hand sanitizers imported from Mexico are likely to contain methanol, which can be toxic when absorbed through the skin, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said in an import alert issued this week.

The alert covers all hand sanitizers imported from Mexico.

“The FDA’s analyses of alcohol-based hand sanitizers imported from Mexico found 84% of the samples analyzed by the agency from April through December 2020 were not in compliance with the FDA’s regulations,” the administration said. “More than half of the samples were found to contain toxic ingredients, including methanol and/or 1-propanol, at dangerous levels.”

Per the warning, all alcohol-based hand sanitizers from Mexico will be subject to heightened scrutiny, and shipments could be detained.

The FDA and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in June issued warnings and health advisories about certain hand sanitizers imported from Mexico that also contained methanol.

Physicians should advise the public to seek immediate medical attention and contact their poison center – (800) 222-1222 – if they experience symptoms from repeated use of products that are on the FDA recall list, or for advice if they have swallowed an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

Find more information, tools, and resources on the TMA COVID-19 Resource Center, which is updated regularly.

Last Updated On

February 03, 2021

Originally Published On

February 03, 2021

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David Doolittle

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(512) 370-1385

Dave Doolittle is editor of Texas Medicine and Texas Medicine Today. Dave grew up in Austin, where he attended culinary school as well as the University of Texas. He spent years covering Central Texas for the Austin American-Statesman newspaper. He is the father of two girls, a proud Longhorn, and an avid motorsports fan.

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