Three hand sanitizers many have used nationally in the fight against COVID-19 contamination have been recalled because they contain methanol, according to the U.S. Food & Drug Administration.
The recalled sanitizers
▪ Global Sanitizers’ recall of 50,000 units of its Medically Minded hand sanitizers. The Las Vegas-based company distributes nationwide and cites lot numbers E212020 and E082020 with a “best buy” date stamp of 5/21/2022.
The hand sanitizer was distributed nationwide to wholesale companies that then distributed to retailers in July 2020 and August 2020.
▪ Dibar Nutricional, a company based in Mexico, is voluntarily recalling 27 lots of its DIBAR Labs Hand Sanitizer that are packaged in eight-ounce (8-53090-00301-3 UPC) and 16-ounce (8-53090-00302-0 UPC) fluid bottles.
These products were distributed nationwide in the United States through S.E.N.D. LLC.
▪ Dibar is also voluntarily recalling two lots of its ProtectoRx Hand Sanitizer that is packaged in two-ounce (Lot Number LDHSN050720) and 16-ounce (Lot Number LDHSN050820) fluid bottles.
Products labeled as ProtectoRx Hand Sanitizer were distributed in Puerto Rico through PR Trading LLC.
Methanol is the reason
These three sanitizers, used and marketed to help decrease bacteria on the skin when conventional soap and water is not handy, were recalled on May 11 and 12, 2021, because they have been found to contain methanol.
Since the summer of 2020, when buying hand sanitizers began in earnest when people were especially worried about catching COVID-19 by touching contaminated surfaces, the FDA has referred to methanol, aka wood alcohol, as possibly “toxic” when rubbed into the skin.
But the CDC also said more damage from methanol has happened when people ingest the product. The CDC also has updated its findings to note that while one can still get the novel coronavirus by touching a surface that contains droplets from an infected person, “the risk is generally considered to be low.”
According to the FDA, “Substantial methanol exposure can result in coma, seizures, permanent blindness, permanent damage to the central nervous system, or death.”
The FDA added that while anyone who uses the hand sanitizers containing methanol is at risk, “young children who accidentally ingest these products and adolescents and adults who drink these products as an alcohol substitute are most at risk for methanol poisoning.”
So far, Global Sanitizers and Dibar both have not received any reports of adverse events related to this recall, according to the FDA.
What you should do
Stop using the recalled products, if you haven’t already.
Global Sanitizers and Dibar say that customers should return the product where you bought it or discard it. Also, to contact your doctor if you notice any health issues related to its use. If retailers still have these recalled sanitizers on their shelves, they are asked to remove them immediately.
Consumers with questions regarding the Medically Minded recall can contact Global Sanitizers at 702-323-4402 or email firstname.lastname@example.org, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Pacific time, Monday through Friday.
Dibar customers who bought DIBAR Labs Hand Sanitizer or ProtectoRx L. De C.V. can contact the company at +52 443-314-5369, 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Eastern time, Monday-Friday or email QA@dibarlabs.com.
Miami Herald staff writer David J. Neal contributed to this report.