The FDA warns about contaminated copycat eye drops

The Food and Drug Administration is warning the public about copycat eye drops because of the risk of infection.

The South Moon, Rebright and FivFivGo eye drops are offered in packaging that could easily be confused with Bausch + Lomb’s Limify brand eye drops, an over-the-counter product approved to relieve redness, the FDA said Wednesday.

The copycat products are said to combat conditions such as glaucoma, which is treated with prescription drugs or surgery, the agency noted.

Photo of South Moon’s copycat eye drop product.

Food and Drug Administration

The FDA tested samples of South Moon and Rebright eye drops purchased online and found that the former were contaminated with Burkholderia cepacia complex, a group of bacteria that could cause an antibiotic-resistant infection. Although Rebright testing found no contamination, the agency recommended against its use.

FDA testing also found that South Moon and Rebright drops lacked brimonidine tartrate, the active ingredient in Limify. The agency was unable to obtain FivFivGo samples.

Image of authentic Limify eye drops.

Food and Drug Administration

The origin of the copycat products is still unclear, but the federal authority is continuing to investigate.

The FDA has received reports related to possibly counterfeit Lumify, including quality concerns, eye irritation, pain and infection, according to the agency, which advised eye drop users to purchase products only from reputable retailers such as federally licensed pharmacies.

The warning comes just months after an eye drop recall 28 products were removed from store shelves due to safety concerns sparked by investigators finding unsanitary conditions at a manufacturing facility in India. This recall in November was…

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