Health Canada is advising Canadians that hand sanitizers labelled as “Anti-Microbe” are being recalled from the marketplace because they may pose a risk to health risk to consumers, particularly children.
Various 0.3% benzalkonium chloride hand sanitizers labelled as “Anti-Microbe” and/or with Drug Identification Number (DIN) 02248351 are being recalled because they contain a higher concentration of benzalkonium chloride than permitted for personal or domestic (i.e., home) use and may pose health risks, particularly to children up to 12 years of age, explains a news release.
According to Health Canada, products containing 0.3% benzalkonium chloride should be labelled for adult use in an industrial setting only (e.g., health care and food processing facilities), and the affected products are not appropriately labelled with this information.
For personal or domestic use, benzalkonium chloride cannot exceed a 0.15% concentration in hand sanitizers.
0.3% benzalkonium chloride may cause red, itchy, dry or scaly skin
Benzalkonium chloride is primarily used as a preservative and antimicrobial agent. In Canada, it is a known active ingredient in hard surface disinfectants and hand sanitizers. The frequent, daily use of hand sanitizers containing 0.3% benzalkonium chloride may cause red, itchy, dry or scaly skin in susceptible individuals. In some cases, peeling, swelling or blistering can occur.
In rare cases, an allergic reaction can happen and can be serious. Signs of an allergic reaction include rash and hives; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue or throat; chest or throat tightness; and wheezing or trouble breathing. Young children, adolescents, and people with skin conditions like eczema are particularly at risk of side effects involving frequent use.
The affected products are sold under various product and company names (see list below) in various sizes and packaging formats.
|Anti-Microbe||Atoms F.D. Inc. (license holder and recalling company)|
|32 Anti-Microbe||Groupe BOD|
|Essence 360 Anti-Microbe||Essence360 International|
|Nutra One Anti-Microbe||Nutra One Inc.|
|Paoch Anti-Microbe||Entreprise Paoch Inc.|
|Produits Bio-Expert Anti-Microbe||Produits Bio-experts Inc.|
|Yunisan Handzo||Arclay Natural Technologies Inc.|
What you should do
- Stop using hand sanitizers labelled as "Anti-Microbe" and/or with the DIN 02248351,
- 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 recalling company, Atoms F.D. Inc., by calling 1-514-745-2597, or by email at email@example.com if you would like more information about the recall.
- Consult your health care professional if you have health concerns after using these products.
- Report any health product adverse events or complaints to Health Canada.
Health Canada has directed the license holder, Atoms F.D. Inc., to recall the affected products from the marketplace. It will continue to monitor the recall and will update Canadians if additional safety concerns are identified.