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Safety alert: Canada-wide is recalling multiple hand sanitizers due to 'health risks'

Hand sanitizer containing elevated levels of acetaldehyde may increase the risk of cancer.
Health Canada warns that hand sanitizers are being recalled because they may pose "health risks" in February 2022. Some of them contain acetaldehyde. Photo: Hand sanitizer / Getty Images

Health Canada warns that several hand sanitizers are being recalled because they may pose "health risks."

The federal health department issued a recall notification on Monday (Feb. 21) that lots of three hand sanitizer products do not meet its requirements. The products have been added to a growing list of recalled sanitizer products.

Rock Spirits / The Newfoundland Distillery Company is recalling Alcohol Antiseptic 80% (v/v) Topical Solution Hand Sanitizer and The Newfoundland Distillery Company is also recalling Fighting Spirit; both of the recalled products contain acetaldehyde, which is an undeclared impurity.

Hand sanitizer containing elevated levels of acetaldehyde may increase the risk of cancer.

D&L Distribution and Logistic Services Inc. is recalling its Rapid Protectant Hand Sanitizer Gel because it is not properly labelled (including missing risk statements and information for vulnerable populations).

Consumers should stop using the recalled products and consult a doctor if they used them or have health concerns. Report any health product adverse events or complaints to Health Canada. 

What you should do

  • Stop using the products identified in the table.
    • Follow municipal or regional guidelines on how to dispose of chemicals and other hazardous waste; or
    • Return the product to your local pharmacy for proper disposal
  • Contact the company if you would like more information about the recall
  • Consult your health care professional if you have used these products and have health concerns
  • Keep all hand sanitizers out of the reach of children.
  • Never eat or drink hand sanitizers, as swallowing even small amounts can be dangerous or fatal. If swallowed, call a poison control centre or seek medical help immediately.

To help limit the spread of COVID-19, wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

If soap and water are not available, use alcohol-based hand sanitizers that have been authorized for sale in Canada. 

See a complete list of the recalled products from Health Canada.

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