Bad incident, take some caution

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Bad incident, take some caution

Post by MissNoodle »

This month has been hectic with my 55 gallon...
Unfortunately my kid got hand sanitizer in it, which resulted in 6 cories dying and my BN pleco boy. However, many of the survivors have lasting problems now.
Many have gone blind.

The tank last month was gutted out, everything replaced, I pulled a spare filter from one of my other tanks (I always run extra filters!), and until the tank was scrubbed and sat with an entire huge bag of carbon, the fish lived in a tote for awhile. Once they got put back and things monitored...

Many of my fish have gone blind in one or both eyes because of this. All 6 of my cherry barbs in the tank are blinded, as are all of my weitzmani corydoras, CW028 cories, and a couple of my trilineatus cories too.
My hoplos had whiskers burned off from it, but have since grown back.

The fish are adapting, the cories especially seem to be getting on well, given their sense of smell, though has been a challenge with the cherry barbs but ive managed to get them to eat if the food is placed right in front of them... so good there.

But it was really touch and go, and really horrible for the cories lost. Symptoms were internal bleeding and eye swelling and inability to swim properly. The worst affected had to be euthanized.

Please be very cautious with the use of sanitizer in this time of the pandemic. It took just a minute of my kid trying to feed the fish to turn into a nightmare. It was one of the sanitizers used in stores, so industrial type, but can't say which one it was. But he didn't wash his hands prior like we normally do. Took his hands being in the tank for just a minute.
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Re: Bad incident, take some caution

Post by bekateen »

Worry. Glad you were able to save some. How much hand sanitizer did he add?
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Re: Bad incident, take some caution

Post by MissNoodle »

bekateen wrote: Sun Nov 15, 2020 6:20 am Worry. Glad you were able to save some. How much hand sanitizer did he add?
Just what he had on his hands of normal use. Usually we wash it off our hands once we get home, but he didn't remember to.
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Re: Bad incident, take some caution

Post by MissNoodle »

Some of the survivors had bleeding in the skull at the time of the incident, but have pulled through and have been back to relative normal.
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Most of the ones lost have been my paleatus group. The ones in this photo are surviving fish.

Hand sanitizer got in the tank, I did an immediate total water change and carbon but wasn't enough, then hours later fish started flashing, did another water change. Next day had fish with internal bleeding, swimming like drunk, eyes severely swollen, bleeding in skull... was very very hectic.
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Re: Bad incident, take some caution

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=((
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Re: Bad incident, take some caution

Post by fishguy1978 »

Wow, sorry to hear this. I’m curious what the time delay was between using hand sanitizer and hand entry into the aquarium was?
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Re: Bad incident, take some caution

Post by MissNoodle »

fishguy1978 wrote: Sun Nov 15, 2020 5:01 pm Wow, sorry to hear this. I’m curious what the time delay was between using hand sanitizer and hand entry into the aquarium was?
We weren't home longer than 10 minutes when he did this, so probably about 30 minutes after leaving the store to that point.
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Re: Bad incident, take some caution

Post by fishguy1978 »

I wonder what was in the sanitizer that lasted that long. Any alcohol would have evaporated 15 seconds after application.
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Re: Bad incident, take some caution

Post by Jools »

How long since the incident, I ask because I have seen eyes restored to full function after similar incidents.

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Re: Bad incident, take some caution

Post by MissNoodle »

Jools wrote: Sun Nov 15, 2020 9:33 pm How long since the incident, I ask because I have seen eyes restored to full function after similar incidents.

Jools
October 19th is when it happened, so its been 27 days since.

I'm really hoping some get their sight back. The cories function really well, but the barbs are struggling. I can get them to eat but theyre stressed from it.
fishguy1978 wrote: Sun Nov 15, 2020 8:39 pm I wonder what was in the sanitizer that lasted that long. Any alcohol would have evaporated 15 seconds after application.
It was discussed on another board, we don't think it was the alcohol since industrial sanitizers are using other materials now, and there has been several in my country on recall for unsafe ingredients.
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Re: Bad incident, take some caution

Post by Jools »

That's longer than I would have expected, but not much. I've seen eyes that look like that clear up after 2-3 weeks. Fingers crossed.

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Re: Bad incident, take some caution

Post by MissNoodle »

Jools wrote: Mon Nov 16, 2020 8:32 am That's longer than I would have expected, but not much. I've seen eyes that look like that clear up after 2-3 weeks. Fingers crossed.

Jools
I'm hoping so! The one CW028 is affected with the densest white in the eye.
But thats a bit of hope which is nice with this mess.
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Re: Bad incident, take some caution

Post by Viktor Jarikov »

Wow, sorry to hear this and I must say I am surprised. I imagine hand sanitizer manufacturers and most certainly the FDA (government Food and Drug Administration) understand that people who use their product can then touch their face, mouth, eyes, food, expose their mucus membranes to it, etc. especially smaller children... so there cannot be any dangerous and long-lingering chemicals in it. I naively thought it is isopropyl alcohol (same chemical as in the rubbing alcohol) with maybe vitamin E added as some bottles claim but that's it. Or given how gelatinous the sanitizer is, could be some other form of alcohol or some benign thickener added to the composition...

Not that it pertains to this case as the alcohol would have long evaporated but is it known if isopropyl alcohol (aka isopropanol) causes blindness, reminiscent of methyl alcohol aka methanol? I'd not think so as isopropanol is 3 times bigger a molecule than methanol and the 2x bigger ethanol is already benign compared to methanol.

I gotta read up on it. I cannot imagine that a chemical from hand sanitizer stayed on hands after 30 minutes in sufficient quantity to then be dissolved in 55 gallons of water and poison fish that bad. Again, it is likely my ignorance but I am shocked enough to start thinking about alternative explanations. As I was reading the original post I was imagining the child squirting sanitizer into the tank in a copious amount...
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Re: Bad incident, take some caution

Post by MissNoodle »

Viktor Jarikov wrote: Tue Nov 17, 2020 3:32 pm Wow, sorry to hear this and I must say I am surprised. I imagine hand sanitizer manufacturers and most certainly the FDA (government Food and Drug Administration) understand that people who use their product can then touch their face, mouth, eyes, food, expose their mucus membranes to it, etc. especially smaller children... so there cannot be any dangerous and long-lingering chemicals in it. I naively thought it is isopropyl alcohol (same chemical as in the rubbing alcohol) with maybe vitamin E added as some bottles claim but that's it. Or given how gelatinous the sanitizer is, could be some other form of alcohol or some benign thickener added to the composition...

Not that it pertains to this case as the alcohol would have long evaporated but is it known if isopropyl alcohol (aka isopropanol) causes blindness, reminiscent of methyl alcohol aka methanol? I'd not think so as isopropanol is 3 times bigger a molecule than methanol and the 2x bigger ethanol is already benign compared to methanol.

I gotta read up on it. I cannot imagine that a chemical from hand sanitizer stayed on hands after 30 minutes in sufficient quantity to then be dissolved in 55 gallons of water and poison fish that bad. Again, it is likely my ignorance but I am shocked enough to start thinking about alternative explanations. As I was reading the original post I was imagining the child squirting sanitizer into the tank in a copious amount...
If this helps theres been recalls, many just a day or two before my incident.
https://healthycanadians.gc.ca/recall-a ... 5a-eng.php

And this is only my household sanitizer, but not the one used, but check the ingredients here too.
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Discussed on another group about it too. Someone else had it happen as well, lost a lot of their dwarf chain loaches :( seems the scaleless fish are especially sensitive to it.
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Re: Bad incident, take some caution

Post by Viktor Jarikov »

And both you and that someone else have no other fathomable explanation for fish problems... other than the time proximity of the sanitizer use, then hands in the water, then quick onset of fish health problems?

All the ingredients in the sanitizer in the photo are FDA approved and if that sanitizer were to be blamed for contamination 30 minutes after use, I'd be very dubious. I understand the sanitizer in question was different.

I looked at the first page of the recalled sanitizers. They all fall into two categories - the ones containing technical (not medicinal or human) grade ethanol and the others containing another common organic solvent ethyl acetate. Neither ethanol, nor its contaminants arising from ethanol being of technical grade, nor ethyl acetate would stay on human hands longer than a minute, they all have low boiling / evaporation temps.

So I remain perplexed.
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Re: Bad incident, take some caution

Post by MissNoodle »

Viktor Jarikov wrote: Wed Nov 18, 2020 1:59 am And both you and that someone else have no other fathomable explanation for fish problems... other than the time proximity of the sanitizer use, then hands in the water, then quick onset of fish health problems?

All the ingredients in the sanitizer in the photo are FDA approved and if that sanitizer were to be blamed for contamination 30 minutes after use, I'd be very dubious. I understand the sanitizer in question was different.

I looked at the first page of the recalled sanitizers. They all fall into two categories - the ones containing technical (not medicinal or human) grade ethanol and the others containing another common organic solvent ethyl acetate. Neither ethanol, nor its contaminants arising from ethanol being of technical grade, nor ethyl acetate would stay on human hands longer than a minute, they all have low boiling / evaporation temps.

So I remain perplexed.
Yes, they sanitized their hands after opening some packages from Amazon and then did a water change, the first tank they touched had a massive die off. 9 out of their 13 chain loaches died.

And there was no other chemical or problem within my own tank. Kids hands went in and then all went to heck. Despite water change, and carbon, it wasn't enough. Next morning I woke to fish with brain bleeds and eyes severely swollen.
Warning, graphic photo of the deceased fish.
20201020_162048.jpg
I checked all my parameters in the tank, first thing to check any time things go wrong, ammonia 0 nitrite 0 Nitrate 20 GH 89.5ppm Kh 143ppm pH 7.4

Apparently there's been a string of other incidents with it too.
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/articl ... virus.html

Theres also some cases of schools closing because of sanitizer problems
https://www.newstalk.com/news/schools-h ... ed-1095118
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Re: Bad incident, take some caution

Post by Bas Pels »

Looking at the official ingredients, I have troubles clarifying the outcome.

But could it be there are some unofficial ingredients? That is, some waste was willingly introduced into the sanitizer? Criminally, obviously?
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Re: Bad incident, take some caution

Post by racoll »

Cripes, such an easy mistake to make. Sorry to hear about the fish. Make sure as many people hear about this as possible.

I also find it hard to believe that it's the ethanol, as there will only minute amounts left on the hands after they are are dried, and I doubt it's that toxic in such small quantities after dilution.

Methanol on the other hand I can believe. As little as 30 mL can kill a human. I find it hard to believe that this would be allowed in a product that will be present in most mother's handbags/homes and be easily ingested by a small child.

Could be other trace additives too. The one I have with me contains 2-Benzylideneoctanal (a scent additive I think).
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Re: Bad incident, take some caution

Post by Bas Pels »

Today I read some compaines producing hand sanitiser in the Netherlands had received warnigs, for not using medical grade ethanol but technical grade.

With regards to Racolls comments, technical grade ethanol can contain methanol - but as methanol vaporises at even less warm temperatures, I wonder whether the eventual methanol could be the cause for Miss Noodle's disaster
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Re: Bad incident, take some caution

Post by Uncle.Ned »

Even before the pandemic, I had an employee who constantly used hand sanitizer.
Every day he worked, some fish would be dead the next morning.
Practically every day he did not work, no fish would be dead the next morning.
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