Johnson & Johnson is recalling five aerosol sunscreens containing benzene
Johnson & Johnson announced Wednesday that it is recallinig five aerosol sunscreen products containing traces of benzene — a chemical that can cause cancer with repeated exposure.
The affected products include Aveeno Protect + Refresh and four Neutrogena varieties: Beach Defense, CoolDry Sport, Invisible Defense Daily and Ultrasheer aerosol sunscreens. The recall includes cans of all sizes and sun protection factor, or SPF.
J&J said benzene was detected from testing conducted by the company and an independent laboratory. They are investigating how the contamination occurred.
"Use of these products would not be expected to cause adverse health consequences," according to the statement, and the company voluntarily recalled them "out of an abundance of caution."
Benzene is a commonly used and highly flammable chemical. With repeated exposure at high levels it may cause cancer; it may also damage the immune system and stop cells from functioning normally, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The effects vary depending on how the chemical gets into someone’s body, often through inhalation, ingestion or touch. Symptoms range from an irregular heartbeat and dizzieness to convulsions and death.
The company is working to rid shelves nationwide of the sunscreens and is urging consumers to stop using the products. People can get a refund by calling J&J’s Customer Care Center at 800-458-1673.
J&J said it has made the Food and Drug Administration aware of the recall.