Facing the possibility that faulty packaging of birth control pills could lead to unwanted pregnancies, Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) on Tuesday announced a voluntary recall of 1 million birth control packages. In its press release, the huge drugmaker said: “An investigation by Pfizer found that some blister packs may contain an inexact count of inert or active ingredient tablets and that the tablets may be out of sequence. The cause was identified and corrected immediately.”
Since birth control pills work by varying the amount of active ingredient throughout the course of a month, misaligned sequencing of the pills with different potencies could leave a woman unprotected from an unwanted pregnancy. Pfizer added that the mispackaged pills “do not pose any immediate health effects.”
The recall covers 14 lots each of brand-name Lo/Ovral-28 tablets and generic Norgestrel and Ethinyl Estradiol tablets. Both products are manufactured by Pfizer and sold by Akrimax Rx Products and labeled under the Akrimax Pharmaceuticals brand. Akrimax is a Pfizer unit based in Cranford, N.J.
Pfizer recommends that women who take these recalled birth control pills “should begin using a non-hormonal form of contraception immediately.” That’s advice women should heed immediately.