UPDATE: A Zicam recall is being conducted voluntarily by Matrixx, makers of Zicam Cold Remedy products.
FDA is warning consumers about certain Zicam products and a troubling potential side effect: loss of sense of smell.
According to the FDA warning, they have received over 130 reports of loss of smell from consumers who associated the side effect with the following products: Zicam Cold Remedy Nasal Swabs, Zicam Cold Remedy Nasal Gel, and kids size Zicam Cold Remedy Swabs.
Dr. Janet Woodcock, director of the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research stated:
“Loss of sense of smell is a serious risk for people who use these products for relief from cold symptoms… We are concerned that consumers may unknowingly use a product that could cause serious harm, and therefore we are advising them not to use these products for any reason.”
The FDA advises consumers to stop using these Zicam products immediately.
There has yet to be a scientific study to look at a real cause-and-effect relationship between permanent loss of smell and the use of Zicam Cold Remedy products, but consumers should speak with their doctor about alternative cold relief treatments until such a study is completed. In the meantime there is a Zicam recall in effect, which was initiated by makers of Zicam, Matrixx Initiatives, Inc. shortly after the FDA’s announcement.
If you have experienced any loss of smell or taste after using nasal products that contain zinc, contact your doctor immediately. You should also speak to a health professional, such as your doctor or pharmacist, if you have further questions about this Zicam recall.