Standing Up For You

FDA issues warning about multiple brands of hand sanitizers

When you purchase a health and beauty product or over-the-counter medication, you assume that the product has been subject to quality control measures and careful testing. After all, you are about to entrust your health and safety to the company that produced that product.

Unfortunately, when there is great demand, businesses that don’t have the best interests of the consumer in mind can decide to offer cut-rate health and medical products. Others may not engage in testing to ensure that their product is safe or performs as expected.

A recent warning about multiple brands of hand sanitizers by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) makes it clear how dangerous inadequate testing and regulation in these products could be to consumers.

Once commonly only found in the diaper bags of new moms and in places where people have high exposure to infectious materials, hand sanitizer is now present in most businesses and households. Some of the companies that produce hand sanitizer have turned out products that are not just ineffective but also potentially dangerous for their users. According to the FDA, testing of dozens of brands of hand sanitizer showed that they have potentially dangerous levels of 1-propanol contamination.

Unlike ethanol and isopropyl alcohol, 1-propanol can cause serious side effects. It can impact the central nervous system, especially in children or adults who ingest the product. People can experience slower breathing and heart rates after ingesting 1-propanol. While the symptoms are similar to those of alcohol intoxication, 1-propanol is several times stronger than alcohol.

Those negatively impacted by dangerous products may have the right to take legal action against either the company that manufactured it or the retailer that sold it, depending on the circumstances. An experienced attorney can provide valuable guidance if you or a loved one has suffered harm.