Tylenol Recall

A press release this week announced that Tylenol has recalled some batches of its chidren’s and infant liquid pain relievers, made between April 2008 and June 2008.  The good news is that the issue, a contaminated inactive ingredient that did not make it into the final product, is not one likely to cause serious harm, according to the manufacturer.  The company also has clearly released specific lot numbers that may be affected, so that concerned mothers and fathers can check bottles that they may still have at home.

What I can’t get over, a day after I first heard about this, is why the announcement is being made 17 months after manufacture of this product.  What IF the children’s medicine had been affected, and caused illness?  What about all the children and infants who had been given the medicine by well-intentioned parents in the meantime?

Clearly, I need to understand FDA and product safety standards better, because I just can’t let this go.  Why did it take so long to announce a potential contaminant in children’s medication?

7 Responses to Tylenol Recall

  1. Krista says:

    I was wondering some of the same things when my dad informed me of this the other day. How come it took them so long to decide to recall it? We have a bottle that’s 90% gone and I don’t know when I bought it… good thing it’s not included!

  2. NYfriend says:

    Because the FDA is not genuinely looking out for the public’s health. It is all about money, seriously.

  3. Melissa says:

    A great band, Weeping Tile, has a line:

    “They’re ignoring all the signals they could not afford to hear.

    Private investors in public fear”

    It’s all about the benjamins, baby…

  4. Sara says:

    The recall doesn’t give a lot of information, so it’s hard to know exactly what it was that they were concerned about.

    However.. The recall references an “unused” portion of an ingredient.

    Think of it this way: You’re making cookies. One of the ingredients is eggs. You make one batch of cookies one day, then the next day you are making the second batch of cookies and one of the eggs is apparently rotten.

    Since the “unused” portion was stored separately, it’s unlikely that any of the other eggs or “used” portions of that ingredient were faulty. It’s also unlikely that you would have discovered that portion of the ingredient to be faulty until you were about to use it.

    Since Tylenol is a huuuge company and since there is SOME possibility that the other portions of the same ingredient could have also been “not up to quality control” standards… They chose to do a voluntary recall just to eliminate the possibility of anything happening.

    Or perhaps the problem with the ingredient was one that was degenerative in nature, and they were concerned that the ingredient could be undergoing the same degeneration as the unused portion did, or that it would cause the medication to expire prematurely, or undergo a change in taste or texture that would be inconsistent with their product’s image?

    Recalls should really give more information.

  5. Sara says:

    (not saying that the above is how it works- just saying that it’s likely, based on the wording of the recall.)

  6. Rebecca U says:

    The detail from the Tylenol website doesn’t tell us what to do with the stuff. I tried calling their number to be disconnected after being told to look at their website (jeez, thanks).

    As far as the date of manufacture, I know we bought our recalled lot within the last 3 months at Walmart. If I can find that receipt, I’ll see if Walmart will just take it back. And will try calling the manuf again.

  7. Susila Dewi says:

    Hopefully something like this does not happen again in the future, this should be a valuable lesson for all manufacturers to further improve their quality standards.

%d bloggers like this: