CBS NEWS – The Food and Drug Administration has recently announced recalls of several eye drop brands over concerns they could cause bacterial infections, with potentially devastating health consequences including blindness.
Millions of consumers use nonprescription, over-the-counter drops daily as a remedy for dryness, irritation and other mild eye conditions. But the flurry of recalls is leaving some regular users of the products wondering, are they safe? Here’s what you should know.
Which brands of drops have been recalled?
EzriCare and Delsam Pharma “Artificial Tears Lubricant Eye Drops.” Global Pharma Healthcare on February 2 recalled all lots of its EzriCare and Delsam Pharma brands of “Artificial Tears Lubricant Eye Drops,” which it said could be contaminated with bacteria.
The recall came after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) began an investigation of a cluster of multistate bacterial infections it believed were associated with the tear drops. At the time of the recall, there were 55 reports of adverse reactions to the drops, including eye infections, permanent vision loss and one death from a bloodstream infection.
Global Pharma Healthcare said in a a statement that consumers who use the contaminated eye drops could go blind.
Customers have been advised to immediately stop using the drops.
Delsam Pharma “Artificial Eye Ointment.” Global Pharma on February 24 also recalled one batch of a product distributed by Delsam Pharma,”Artificial Eye Ointment,” again due to possible microbial contamination.
The company said that using the contaminated ointment could lead to infections that cause blindness, though it has not received any reports of injuries related to the product.
Apotex “Brimonidine Tartrate Ophthalmic Solution, 0.15%.” Another manufacturer, Apotex, on March 1 recalled six lots of its own brand of glaucoma drops, called “Brimonidine Tartrate Ophthalmic Solution, 0.15%,” which is for patients with open-angle glaucoma or ocular hypertension.
The company said it initiated the recall “out of an abundance of caution” over concerns that cracks in some of the units’ caps could compromise the drops’ sterility and lead to infection.
Pharmedica “Purely Soothing, 15% MSM Drops.” Pharmaceutical firm Pharmedica USA on March recalled two lots of “Purely Soothing, 15% MSM Drops,” also over sterility concerns … READ MORE.