During the coronavirus crisis, the CDC has recommended that using hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol frequently can help you avoid getting sick and spreading germs to others, if soap and water are not available.

Now, though, the FDA is warning that certain brands of hand sanitizer gels made in Mexico may be so toxic that, not only shouldn't you use them, you shouldn't even pour them down the drain.

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The FDA is urging the public not to use these brands, manufactured by Eskbiochem SA de CV, because they may contain methanol. Methanol can be toxic or even fatal, when absorbed through the skin or ingested.

“Substantial methanol exposure can result in nausea, vomiting, headache, blurred vision, permanent blindness, seizures, coma, permanent damage to the nervous system or death".

The agency said the risk of possible ingestion centered mostly on young children or adolescents who might use alcohol-based sanitizers as a substitute for grain alcohol.

The agency released this list of the brands:
- All-Clean Hand Sanitizer
- Esk Biochem Hand Sanitizer
- CleanCare NoGerm Advanced Hand Sanitizer 75% Alcohol
- Lavar 70 Gel Hand Sanitizer
- The Good Gel Antibacterial Gel Hand Sanitizer
- CleanCare NoGerm Advanced Hand Sanitizer 80% Alcohol
- CleanCare NoGerm Advanced Hand Sanitizer 75% Alcohol
- CleanCare NoGerm Advanced Hand Sanitizer 80% Alcohol
- Saniderm Advanced Hand Sanitizer

The FDA is also concerned with false and misleading claims for hand sanitizers, for example that they can provide prolonged protection such as 24-hours against viruses including COVID-19, since there is no evidence to support these claims.

At this point, however, the FDA is not aware of any reports of adverse events or sickness associated with these hand sanitizer products.

Source: FDA.gov