Johnson & Johnson is expanding its recall of over-the-counter drugs including Tylenol and Motrin IB because of a musty or moldy smell. The McNeil Consumer Healthcare business is recalling 21 lots of over-the-counter drugs sold in the U.S., Puerto Rico, Fiji, Guatemala, the Dominican Republic, Trinidad and Tobago, and Jamaica. The drugs that are being recalled include Benadryl, Children’s Tylenol, Motrin IB, Tylenol Extra Strength, Tylenol Day & Night, and Tylenol PM.
The New Brunswick, New Jersey, company has already made a large recall of those drugs and over-the-counter products, saying about 70 people noticed the smell. Some of them got sick, with symptoms including nausea, stomach pain, vomiting and diarrhea. The odor was linked to a chemical in shipping pallets and traced to a facility in Puerto Rico. The company had planned to stop shipping those products on wooden pallets treated with the chemical, and asked its suppliers to do the same. Johnson & Johnson said the latest recall applies to products made before the January recall.
Johnson & Johnson, the world’s biggest maker of health care products, has dealt with several product recalls since late last year. It withdrew over-the-counter drugs in November and December 2009 before issuing a much larger recall in January. Federal regulators said McNeil was told about the problem in early 2008 but made a limited investigation and failed to tell the FDA quickly. The original withdrawal also included other types of Tylenol, Benadryl, Rolaids, Simply Sleep, and St. Joseph’s aspirin. In late April, McNeil recalled more than 130 million bottles of children’s medicines like Tylenol, Benadryl, and Motrin because of manufacturing problems at a plant in Fort Washington, Pa. Some of the drugs had the wrong ingredient levels, and others contained tiny particles of metal.
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