Odor-Eaters Class Action Lawsuit Filed Over Benzene Recall

Odor-Eaters is the latest aerosol product line determined to have unnecessary, and potentially dangerous, levels of benzene, a known carcinogen.

A class action lawsuit over Odor-Eaters aerosol spray products accuses Blistex of selling toxic and dangerous antifungal products, which were contaminated with elevated levels of benzene; a known cancer-causing agent.

The complaint (PDF) was filed by German Solis in the U.S. District Court Southern District of Florida on November 22, in the wake of a Blistex Odor-Eaters recall issued after benzene was found in the spray products. Solis is seeking class action status for those who bought the recalled antifungal medications.

The FDA announced the Blistex Odor-Eaters recall on November 17, after routine sample testing discovered dangerous levels of benzene in Odor-Eaters Spray Powder and Odor-Eaters Stink Stoppers Spray, which are used for antifungal treatment and odor control.

Solis’ lawsuit claims Blistex Inc., misbranded and wrongfully advertised its Odor-Eater products as safe for children and adults without disclosing the presence of cancer-causing chemical ingredients. Among several calls to action outlined in the lawsuit, Solis claims Blistex should be ordered to stop selling the Odor-Eater product lines, engage in a corrective advertising campaign, reimburse customers for their purchases, and to pay for medical costs associated with any benzene-related cancers or other health conditions linked to exposure to the toxic chemical.

“German Solis purchased the Defendant’s Oder-Eater Product(s) lines on the assumption that the labeling of Defendant’s Oder-Eater Product(s) lines was accurate and that the products were unadulterated, safe and effective,” the lawsuit states. “German Solis would not have purchased Defendant’s Oder-Eater Product(s) lines had he known there was a risk the products may contain benzene, a known human carcinogen.”

Benzene is an industrial chemical that has been associated with the development of several fatal forms of cancer, leukemia and other conditions, such as AML, Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia (CML), Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia (ALL), Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL), Hairy Cell Leukemia (HCL), Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, Multiple Myeloma, Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDL), Myelofibrosis and Myeloid Metaplasia, Aplastic Anemia and Thrombocytopenic Purpura.

Long-term side effects of benzene exposure have been proven to cause anemia, which is a condition that develops when your blood lacks enough healthy red blood cells or hemoglobin. Essentially, the chemical causes bone marrow not to produce enough red blood cells, which can damage an individual’s immune system. Federal regulators have determined long-term exposure to benzene can significantly impact blood cells, to the extent it causes cancer such as leukemia, which affects the blood-forming organs.

The problems with benzene in Odor-Eaters follows the recent discovery of the chemical in a number of different aerosol spray products, including sunscreen, deodorants and antifungal spray. Manufacturers now face a growing number of lawsuits alleging that regular use of the products exposed users to a risk of cancer and other health problems.

The problems have emerged since the prominent testing pharmacy Valisure released a report indicating that it found high levels of benzene in numerous brands and batches of body spray and deodorant spray products, including Old Spice, Secret, Suave, Tag and others. Valisure filed a citizen’s petition with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, calling for a deodorant recall of the affected products.

In October, a Bayer Lotramin and Tinactin antifungal spray recall was issued after routine sample testing discovered benzene in over-the-counter the aerosol spray products used to treat fungus infection, athlete’s foot, and to treat itching, burning, cracking and scaling skin.

Since the recall, a series of antifungal spray lawsuits have been filed against Bayer Pharmaceuticals Co. all raising similar allegations that consumers were harmed because they paid for products which were unsafe and unfit for their intended purpose.

Sunscreen Benzene Concerns

Following similar findings by Valisure of benzene in aerosol sunscreen spray products earlier this year, a number of popular products have been recalled, including Neutrogena, Aveeno, Coppertone and other widely used brands.

Johnson & Johnson issued the Neutrogena and Aveeno sunscreen spray recall in July 2021, after confirming the known human carcinogens was present in it’s products, and at least eight class action complaints have been filed against the company, each raising similar allegations that Johnson & Johnson endangered consumers’ health by not warning them of the presence of benzene in brands of Neutrogena and Aveeno spray sunscreen, which could increase their risk of cancer.

Late last month, Johnson & Johnson and Costco announced they had reached a settlement agreement to resolve the cases. However, the details of the sunscreen settlement agreement have not yet been revealed and the deal has not been finalized.

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