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FDA warning: 'Unacceptable levels' of cancer-causing chemicals in this hand sanitizer brand

The FDA said it found "unacceptable levels" of cancer-causing chemicals during tests of some artnaturals hand sanitizer.

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is urging consumers to stop using all hand sanitizers from artnaturals, due to concerns over cancer-causing chemicals in the products sold nationwide.

On Monday, the FDA announced that it found "unacceptable levels" of benzene, acetaldehyde, and acetal contaminants during tests of some artnaturals scent free hand sanitizer.

As of Oct. 4, the agency said artnaturals hasn't responded to multiple FDA attempts to discuss the contaminated hand sanitizers, including possible recalls and identification of the manufacturer. 

"Therefore, as of October 4, FDA is urging consumers not to use any artnaturals hand sanitizers," the agency said in a notice posted online. The products should be thrown out, ideally in a hazardous waste container, according to the FDA. 

The hand sanitizers were sold at Walmart and Amazon, but were no longer available for purchase on either website, as of Saturday. 

Benzene and acetaldehyde are both linked to cancer in humans, while acetal can irritate the eyes, skin and upper respiratory tract, the FDA said.

"While the exact risk from using hand sanitizer containing benzene, acetaldehyde, or acetal is unknown, FDA recommends consumers do not use products contaminated with unacceptable levels of benzene, acetaldehyde, or acetal," the FDA said. 

The FDA warning comes after a study from Valisure identified high levels of benzene in several hand sanitizer brands, including artnaturals. 

There are now 260 different hand sanitizer products on the FDA's do not use list. The list, which has grown steadily throughout the coronavirus pandemic, features products that may contain toxic ingredients or have less than the required amount of approved alcohol. 

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