Birth Control Pill Mix-Up Leads To Pfizer Recall

When it comes to birth control pills, it’s really important to take the right ones at the right time to prevent pregnancy.

So Pfizer is recalling two kinds of oral contraceptives because some packages had the pills in the wrong order. Others had the wrong number of different pill types in the packages.

The errors could compromise contraception and leave sexually active women at risk for unintended pregnancy. About 1 million packages are covered by the recall.

The contraceptives at issue are: Lo/Ovral-28 and norgestrel and ethinyl estradiol tablets, a generic version. Fourteen lots of each product are affected. (For the specific lots and expiration dates, click here.)

Pfizer makes the pills, but they’re sold by Akrimax Pharmaceuticals, a privately held company in Cranford, N.J.

What should you do if you’re taking them?

Gynecologist (and blogger) Margaret Polaneczky shared the advice she’s giving her patients:

  • Talk to your doctor.
  • Go to the pharmacy for a new package of pills.
  • If you’ve been sexually active, do a pregnancy test.
  • If not, then start a new package of pills and use condoms for the next few weeks.

Of course, she notes this is she’s telling her patients, and what your doctor recommends might be different.

The recall notice says people should contact their doctors and return the affected pills to their pharmacies.

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.