Saturday, October 30, 2010

Pfizer Recalls Lipitor Over Odor

Pfizer joined Johnson & Johnson in recalling medicine due to noxious chemical 2, 4, 6-tribromoanisole(TBP).  Pfizer recalled over 225,000 bottles in 2010 due to the odor problem.  Note the company's response:

"Research indicates that a major source of tribromoanisole (TBA) appears to be 2, 4, 6-tribromoanisole(TBP), a chemical used as a wood preservative," the company said. "Although TBP often is applied to pallets used to transport and store a variety of products, Pfizer prohibits the utilization of TBP-treated wood in the shipment of its medicines."

What were the other sources of TBA?  Were they in packaging not shipped on TBP treated wood?  Was TBA in any medicinal ingredients?

J & J's Tylenol problems went beyond improper wood pallet use.  They shuttered their Ft. Washington plant and are working to line up suppliers for its reopening.

Pfizer said the bottles were supplied by a third-party manufacturer.

By whom and from where?  China is a favored supplier for drug manufacturers.  Cheap labor and ingredients, while providing substantial cost savings, do not ensure quality.

It's J & J's and Pfizer's job.  While nausea, stomach pain, vomiting and diarrhea aren't life threatening, medicines are supposed to relieve, not cause symptoms.

Dr. W. Edwards Deming said know your supplier, a difficult task when production is global.  Pfizer and J & J are in the midst of this lesson.

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