Monday, 5 September 2016

US FDA Bans Use Of Antibacterial Soaps

The U.S Food and Drug Administration has ( on 2nd of september 2016) issued a ban on the marketing and use of antibacterial soaps and wash.

Antibacterial soaps and washes have long been marketed as a better alternative to regular soaps in preventing and eliminating disease causing bacterial. The debate has been ongoing about the accuracy of this claim as it lacked adequate scientific research and data. There has also been growing evidence showing that long term use of antibacterial soaps and washes leads to emergence of resistant bacteria and increased risk of hormonal disorders.

In a press release the FDA states "This final rule applies to consumer antiseptic wash products containing one or more of 19 specific active ingredients, including the most commonly used ingredients - triclosan and triclocarban. These products are intended for use with water, and are rinsed off after use. This rule does not affect consumer hand sanitizers or wipes, or antibacterial products used in healthcare settings".

The 19 ingredients affected by this ban include;
  • Cloflucarban
  • Fluorosalan
  • Hexachlorophene
  • Hexylresorcinol
  • Polyxamer, 
  • Povidone iodine 5% to 10%
     Iodine containing compounds such as
  • Undecolium chloride iodine complex, 
  • Nonylphenoxypoly ethanoliodine, 
  • Iodine complex (ammonium ethersulfate and polyoxyethylene sorbitan monolaurate) 
  • Iodine complexe (phosphate ester of alkylaryloxy polyethylene glycol)
     Others substances are
  • Methylbenzethonium chloride
  • Phenol (greater than 1.5%)
  • Phenol (Less than 1.5%)
  • Secondary amyltricresols
  • Sodium oxychlorosene
  • Tribromsalan
  • Triclocarban
  • Triclosan
  • Triple dye

With this ban, manufacturers are no long allowed to produce and market such soaps and washes containing these ingredients.

Consumers are adviced that washing with plain soap and running water still remains one of the most important steps to take in preventing spread of germs and diseases. 

If plain soap is not available, an alcohol based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol content would suffice. 

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