Johnson & Johnson Recalls 45 Million Additional Tylenol Products
Brett EmisonJanuary 17, 2011 8:17 AM
(866) 735-1102 Ext 461
What has happened to Johnson & Johnson?
Just days after the State of Oregon sued the drug giant over its "phantom" recall of over-the-counter Motrin medications, Johnson & Johnson recalled at least 45 million Tylenol products due to ongoing cleanliness problems at its Fort Washington, PA plant.
A "Phantom" Recall
In September 2010, Johnson & Johnson realized that a number of its over-the-counter Motrin medications were defective. However, instead of issuing a formal recall, the drug maker sent "phantom" buyers into stores to purchase the defective medications. However, Johnson & Johnson never warned the public and never warned those who had already purchased the defective Motrin.
Via ABC News at the time:
[Lynn Walther, who worked as a J&J contractor] said he was following the instructions he'd been given. "You should simply act like a regular customer while making these purchases," the document said. "There must be no mention of this being a recall of the product. Run in, find the product, make your purchase and run out."
Now the State of Oregon has sued Johnson & Johnson for secretly trying to remove the defective drugs during the "phantom" recall. Oregon's attorney general filed suit against J&J and two of its subsidiaries, McNeil PPC Inc. and McNeil Healthcare Inc. These subsidiaries make Johnson & Johnson's over-the-counter medications, such as Motrin, Tylenol and Benadryl.
Johnson & Johnson's Tylenol Recall
Johnson & Johnson's McNeil division is also recalling an additional 45 million Tylenol, Benadryl and other over-the-counter medication products. Drugs included in the recall are:
- Tylenol 8 Hour
- Tylenol Arthritis Pain
- Tylenol upper respiratory products
- Sudafed PE
The recall stems from ongoing cleanliness problems at Johnson & Johnson's Fort Washington, Pennsylvania plant.
DePuy Hip Recall
Johnson & Johnson is also responsible for at least 93,000 defective artificial hips. In August 2010, Johnson & Johnson's DePuy Orthopaedics division recalled the ASR XL Acetabular Head System and ASR Hip Resurfacing System. The DePuy hip recall occurred because the metal-on-metal construction of the ASR artificial hips permits grinding and allow metal particles or ions to enter the surrounding tissue.
History of Recalls
Johnson & Johnson products have been the subject of at least a dozen recalls in just over a year's time. Recalls have included:
- Motrin IB
- Children's Benadryl
- Children's Tylenol
- Children's Tylenol Meltaways
- Tylenol Infant Drops
- Tylenol Extra Strength
- Tylenol Day & Night
- Tylenol PM
- Tylenol Extra Strength Rapid Release
- Tylenol Arthritis
- Benadryl Allergy Ultratab
- Acuvue TruEye contact lenses
- Zyrtec Itchy Eye Drops
- DePuy artificial hips
Johnson & Johnson massive recalls prompted its CEO last year to admit that Johnson & Johnson "made a mistake." While I applaud the company for admitting its mistakes (something many companies refuse to do), I have to wonder when Johnson & Johnson will get its house in order. Providing a clean production facility for children's medications seems fundamental. Yet after nearly a year, Johnson & Johnson still cannot accomplish this basic task. Identifying the problem was only the first step. Johnson & Johnson needs to do more to ensure that its products are safe for the millions of people who rely on them.
[More on Johnson & Johnson's recalls and problems]
[More on the DePuy hip recall]
(c) Copyright 2011 Brett A. Emison