Study finds hand sanitizer is hurting more children’s eyes
PARIS, France (CNN) — Hand hygiene is an important way to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and, when soap and water isn’t available, alcohol-based hand sanitizer is the next best way to do this.
Dispensers of hand sanitizer have popped up in malls, schools, workplaces and on public transportation to make it easier for people to disinfect their hands. However, one consequence, documented in France, has been chemical injuries in children who have accidentally gotten sanitizer in their eyes.
There were seven times more cases among children of eye exposure to hazardous chemicals in hand sanitizer between April 1 and August 24, 2020, compared with the same period a year earlier, according to data from the French Poison Control Center.
Similarly, in the same period, 16 children were admitted to a pediatric ophthalmology hospital in Paris because their eyes were spattered with hand sanitizer compared with only one boy in 2019.
Two severe cases required surgery to transplant tissue into their corneas.