Jessie Swan posted this photo of her son with a
Jessie Swan posted this photo of her son with a "horrible rash/burn" all over his body on the Cancer Council Australia's Facebook page. Jessie Swan | Facebook

Infant hospitalised with rash 'caused' by kids sunscreen

A QUEENSLAND mother says a popular kids sunscreen has given her infant son a "horrible rash/burn".

Jessie Swan, from Brisbane, says her three-month-old son spent three days in hospital after having a reaction to Cancer Council Australia's Peppa Pig Kids Sunscreen Range SPF50+.

In a post on the Cancer Council Australia's Facebook page along with a photo of her son with a rash/burn all over his body, Ms Swan says "this is not sunburn, this is a reaction to the cream".

"He has not been in the sun, he was simply outdoors so I put screen on him just in case. 

"We've been in hospital for 3 days 2 nights so far trying to treat this horrible rash/burn caused by your 50+ Peppa Pig sunscreen."

"Please explain how your product could possibly do this?!" she says.

A Cancer Council Australia representative has responded to Ms Swan's post apologising and saying they will look into this.

In a media statement provided to Australian Regional Media, the Cancer Council Australia says they have been in direct contact with Ms Swan.

"As a cancer charity, Cancer Council's focus is cancer prevention and awareness. We take the safety and effectiveness of our sunscreens very seriously and respond to all feedback regarding our products. 

"Yesterday we were saddened to learn via Facebook that a young child had a negative experience with our SPF50+ Kids Sunscreen.

"We investigate all feedback regarding our sunscreen products individually. On some occasions, we conclude that there has been an allergic or chemical reaction to particular, but different, ingredients in the product - this is why we always recommend doing a small patch test before applying any sunscreen to yourself or other family members."

Cancer Council Australia says this product, along with their other products formulated for sensitive skin are dermatologically tested.

"[They] are dermatologically tested to ensure that they pass the Repeat Insult Patch Test (RIPT), a recognised formal skin sensitivity test for topically applied products. If you have sensitive skin, doing a personal patch test is even more important.

"Sunscreens in Australia are strictly regulated by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA). All Cancer Council sunscreens and their ingredients are fully compliant with these regulations and all of our sunscreens are independently tested to ensure they exceed the SPF level advised on the bottle."

Ms Swan denied to comment further.


Meanwhile, her post has gone viral, generating lots of comments on Facebook from parents with similar stories. 

Tegan Jayne says she has the same issue last month with the same sunscreen.

"I posted on my own profile about it. We applied it twice in 4hrs and still had 3 children with sunburn. The only one who wasn't was the one who DIDN'T have it reapplied the second time."

Dani Lawler says: "Yup this Peppa Pig sunscreen makes my daughter's face swell up."

Jade Carpenter says: "My niece just had a reaction to the same Peppa Pig sunscreen the other day too. The doctors have said they think it must be an allergic reaction and my sister ended up giving me 7 different cancer council sunscreens as she can no longer use them and my children have not had any problems with them."

Bronwyn Gollan says she too discontinued using Pepper Pig sunscreen due to her two children having "severe sunburn with heavy application applied every 2 hours".

Katey Spurr says: "This Peppa Pig sunscreen is the worst I have used! Me and my 4.5 year old son have got badly burnt every time we have used it."

Cancer Council Australia says it takes any concerns raised about their products "very seriously" and investigates all feedback regarding their sunscreen products individually.

"This product (SPF50+ Kids Sunscreen) has been on the market for a number of years. Since it was introduced more than 250,000 bottles have been sold. We have only received a very small number of complaints regarding this product, some of which related to issues with the function of the pump spray, not the sunscreen itself." 

But not everyone commenting has an issue with this particular brand of sunscreen.

Em Luxton says: "We too have this and it has always worked well. I use it on my 4 year old and 18 month old

Lena Tuson says:  "This is the only sunscreen we use. Works great for us. Everyone is different."

In comments on her post, Ms Swan says she has used other Cancer Council Australia brand sunscreens on her son with "no problems at all" so "assumed this one would also be okay, if not better".

Her son has now been discharged from hospital.


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