Below is yet another warning from the FDA regarding contaminated eye drops, dated late January 2024. This announcement comes on the heals of several warning in 2023. I find this latest one especially interesting because of the fact that these are called “copycat” eye drops. Look carefully at the images below and you’ll understand why.
[1/31/2024] FDA is warning consumers not to purchase or use South Moon, Rebright or FivFivGo eye drops because of the potential risk of eye infection.
These are copycat eye drop products that consumers can easily mistake for Bausch + Lomb’s Lumify brand eye drops, an over-the-counter product approved for redness relief.
South Moon, Rebright and FivFivGo eye drops are unapproved drugs and should not be available for sale in the U.S. They claim to treat eye conditions such as glaucoma, which is treated with prescription drugs or surgery.
Patients who have signs or symptoms of an eye infection should talk to their health care provider or seek medical care immediately. FDA recommends consumers properly discard these products.
The agency tested samples of South Moon and Rebright eye drops, purchased online. The South Moon eye drops were contaminated with Burkholderia cepacia complex, a group of bacteria that could result in an antibiotic-resistant infection. While Rebright testing was negative for contamination, FDA recommends consumers not use this product.
FDA testing of the Rebright and South Moon eye drops also found that these copycat products lacked brimonidine tartrate, the active ingredient in Lumify. FDA was unable to obtain FivFivGo samples.
The origin of these products is currently unclear, and FDA continues to investigate. South Moon is labeled as made by Shantou Cross-border Premium Products E-Commerce Co. Ltd. in China.
FDA has not received any adverse event reports that specifically name the South Moon, Rebright or FivFivGo products. However, the agency has received reports related to possibly fake Lumify, including product quality concerns, eye irritation, pain and infection.
The agency recommends consumers only buy eye products from reputable retailers such as state-licensed pharmacies and beware of online retailers selling products with false claims.
Comparison of authentic Lumify with copycat products
The South Moon, Rebright and FivFivGo photos are examples of the images that appear on various websites. Some of these copycat products may be falsely labeled with “Bausch + Lomb” at the top of the packaging. The actual products may look different.
Authentic Lumify Eye Drops (below)