February 4, 2007
FDA Considers Partial Ban on Skin Lighteners
Article in the Chicago Tribune -- FDA weighs curb on skin lighteners, by Robert Cohen of the Newhouse News Service:
The Food and Drug Administration is considering a partial ban on widely used cosmetic skin fade creams and lotions, warning that the bleaching agent hydroquinone contained in the products might cause cancer and a disfiguring condition.
Dermatologists and manufacturers insist the products are safe and are urging the FDA to back off.
Although the products have been on the market for decades, the FDA reported in the summer there was "some evidence" from studies that hydroquinone can cause cancer, liver lesions and kidney disease in rodents. The FDA also said it could cause a disfiguring skin condition in people called ochronosis, which causes the skin to become dark and thick and results in dome-shaped yellowish spots and grayish-brown spots.
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