FDA wants to rate UVA protection in sunscreen products

Using a scale of 1 to 4 stars, the proposed regulation will help consumers identify the level of UVA protection offered by a product.

If a sunscreen product does not provide at least a low level (one star) of protection, the FDA is proposing to require that the product bear a “no UVA protection” marking on the front label near the SPF value.

Ratings would be derived from 2 tests. The first test measures a product’s ability to reduce the amount of UVA radiation that passes through it. The second test measures a product’s ability to prevent tanning. This test is nearly identical to the SPF test used to determine the effectiveness of UVB sunscreen products.

In addition, a “Warnings” statement will be added to the “Drug Facts” box in order to increase awareness that sunscreens are only one part of a sun protection program.

My only comment is that I’m surprised they are using “stars.” Wouldn’t “suns” with little smiley faces be more appropriate?

A related article from the Sun Screen Foundation is here.

The agency is soliciting comments until November 26, 2007.
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8/30/07 09:35 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at www.Vicus.com, a complementary and alternative medicine website.