Buyer Beware: Skin creams, beauty and antiseptic soaps, or lotions may contain mercury, the FDA warns.

The FDA stated that skin products containing mercury have been found in at least seven states. Such products are manufactured in other countries and may be marketed as skin lighteners, anti-aging or acne treatments.

The FDA offers the following tips to impart to your patients:

• Check the label of any skin lightening, anti-aging or other skin product for the words “mercurous chloride,” “calomel,” “mercuric,” “mercurio,” or “mercury.” If you see any of these words, stop using the product immediately.
• If there is no label or no ingredients are listed, don’t use the product.
• Don’t use products without any English labeling.
• If you suspect you have been using a product with mercury, stop using it immediately. Thoroughly wash your hands and any other parts of your body that have come in contact with the product. Contact a doctor for advice.
• Before throwing out a product that may contain mercury, seal it in a plastic bag or leak-proof container. Check with your local environmental, health or solid waste agency for mercury disposal instructions.

Source: FDA consumer health information

Caption: These skin creams manufactured in other countries are among the products found in recent years to contain mercury, according to the FDA .