An additional three people are in critical condition, the New Mexico Department of Health said in a statement. “All seven people are believed to have drunk hand sanitizer containing methanol,” it said.
The cases were reported to New Mexico Poison Control over several weeks in May, and are related to alcoholism, health officials said. They did not provide additional details on the victims or where the incidents happened.
“If you think you may have used or consumed hand sanitizer containing methanol, please seek medical care,” state health Secretary Kathy Kunkel said in a statement. “An antidote to methanol poisoning is available, but the earlier someone gets treated for methanol poisoning the better the chance of recovery.”
Exposure to significant amounts of methanol can result in nausea, vomiting, headache, blurred vision, permanent blindness, seizures, coma, permanent damage to the nervous system or death.