Target Eyedrops May Cause Infection: FDA Warning
On October 27, 2023, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a warning [1.] that flagged 26 brands of eye drops and gels sold at Target, CVS Health, Leader (Cardinal Health), Rugby (Cardinal Health), Rite Aid, and Velocity Pharma. Affected products sold at Target include:
|Target||Up&Up Dry Eye Relief Lubricant Eye Drops 30 ml||Polyethylene Glycol 400 0.4% & Propylene Glycol 0.3% Eye Drops|
|Up&Up Extreme Relief Dry Eye 15 ml (single pack)||Polyethylene Glycol 400 0.4% & Propylene Glycol 0.3% Eye Drops|
|Up&Up Extreme Relief Dry Eye 30 ml (twin pack)||Carboxymethylcellulose Sodium Eye Drops 0.5% w/v|
The FDA recommended that Target recall all lots of the above products after investigators found unsanitary conditions in a manufacturing plant. Bacterial tests came back positive from critical drug production areas in the plant, which the agency did not immediately identify.
Target, CVS, and Rite Aid are removing the potentially contaminated eye drops from their stores and websites, according to the FDA. Products branded as Leader, Rugby, and Velocity may still be available in stores and online and should not be purchased or used.
Symptoms of an Eye Infection from Tainted Eye Drops
- Blurry vision
- Pain or discomfort
- Redness of the eyelid or eye
- Feeling like there is something in the eye
- Increased sensitivity to light
Which Brands of Eyedrops Have Been Recalled in 2023?
In January 2023, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warned consumers to stop using EzriCare Artificial Tears and Delsam Pharma’s Artificial Tears after the products were linked to a drug-resistant strain of the bacterium Pseudomonas aeruginosa, which was linked to at least 4 deaths and vision loss in 14 patients.
Apotex, a Canadian pharmaceutical company, recalled prescription eye drops in March after some bottle caps developed cracks, which could compromise the product’s sterility.
FDA Warns of Infection Risk with OTC Eyedrops: Eyewitness News Video
FDA Recommendation on Contaminated Eye Drops
To date, the FDA has not received any reports of infection associated with the eye drop products named in the Oct. 27 alert, but it was encouraging patients and healthcare professionals to report any cases to the agency.
If you purchased any potentially contaminated eyedrops, you should properly discard them by taking them to a drug take-back site or by checking whether a product was included on the FDA's “flush list” of drugs that can be safely discarded at home.
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