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FDA warns against toxic chemical sunscreen absorption levels

Updated: Oct 17, 2022

An FDA study of common sunscreen ingredients, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, has established that active chemicals in sunscreens can readily soak into the bloodstream at concentrations far greater than the Food and Drug Administration’s safety threshold. The FDA say they do not know if these active ingredients are safe and have confirmed the need for more testing.

According to the FDA, if active ingredients are found in the blood at a level of 0.5 nanograms per milliliter or higher, they should be analyzed to determine whether they increase the risk of cancer, birth defects or other adverse effects.

The FDA identified six ingredients - avobenzone, oxybenzone, octocrylene, homosalate, octisalate and octinoxate – as having reached blood concentrations that exceeded the FDA threshold for more safety testing after just one application, and blood concentrations increased over time.

“Results of our study released today show there is evidence that some sunscreen active ingredients may be absorbed,” Dr. Janet Woodcock, director of the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, said in a statement.

Read the Reuters news article here.

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