2010 stands poised to be the year of the pharmaceutical recall, with the announcement this week by Pfizer that they’re beginning another Lipitor recall. This isn’t the first such recall for Lipitor, for Pfizer, or for the pharmaceutical industry this year. If you’re taking drugs to treat ailments, disease, or as a preventative measure, there’s a good chance that you may have been impacted by a drug recall this year.
According to The Wall Street Journal, Pfizer announced this week a Lipitor recall due to an odor in the bottles that may cause gastrointestinal issues in consumers-it’s the fourth such recall of Lipitor this year. If you take Lipitor for high cholesterol, please visit your pharmacist and/or doctor for information on the recall or to get a replacement prescription.
Parents were concerned when large quantities of over-the-counter fever reducing medications such as Tylenol were recalled earlier this year. The drug supply was practically depleted from most stores, leaving parents in need of pain and fever reducing medications to sample generic or store brand variations of the same drug. Like with Lipitor, CNN notes that this recall was also based on a foul odor from the bottles and medications.
If you sought relief from Rolaids, you may have been impacted by a recall this year. Rolaids issued several recalls in 2010, the most recent of which occurred earlier in December, according to the FDA. Unlike Pfizer’s recall of Lipitor and the Tylenol recall, several varieties of Rolaids were recalled in the United States after bits of wood and metal were found in some lots.
What do these recalls mean for the pharmaceutical industry?
These drug recalls may have an effect on the bottom line for the pharmaceutical industry, some of whom will suffer financial losses from the recalls and the time it takes to produce products to replace those taken off the shelves. Shortages may cause consumers to look for alternative medicines when possible, especially if it takes companies a substantial amount of time to rebuild consumer trust and drug supplies.
What do these recalls mean for the consumer?
The pharmaceutical recalls of 2010 serve as a reminder to the American consumer to stay attentive and listen to FDA warnings and recall statements when issued. While some consumers may have their faith in the drug companies shaken, many will continue to take medications (over-the-counter and prescription) faithfully.