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What You Need to Know About the Birth Control Pills Recall


Today, almost 1 million packets of birth control pills were recalled because they may not have enough contraceptive in them to prevent pregnancy. The recalled birth control pills include 14 lots of Lo/Ovral-28 tablets and 14 lots of Norgestrel and Ethinyl Estradiol tablets that were manufactured by Pfizer and marketed by Akrimax Pharmaceuticals. The recalled pills were shipped to warehouses, clinics and retail pharmacies nationwide. 

The first thing to do to see if your birth control pills have been recalled is to check the product name, lot number, expiration date, and NDC from this chart on the FDA's website. Then, if you have a set of birth control pills that are a part of the recall, you should notify your physician and return the product to the pharmacy, according to the FDA. 

The next step for women with recalled pills? Start using an alternative form of birth control, says Shari Brasner, MD and a clinical assistant professor in the Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Medicine at the Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City.

"There are many options for women whose pills are affected by the recall," Brasner says. "Use an alternative form of birth control for the remainder of the cycle, or call their gynecologist for a prescription of an alternative medication (many times, the same formulation is made by a different company and marketed under a different name), or consider the use of emergency contraception to reduce the risk of unintended pregnancy."
If you have not been adequately protected and had sex within the last 72 hours, women have the choice to use emergency contraception. Otherwise, women taking recalled birth control pills can stop taking the medication and wait for the next cycle to start a new package of pills, Brasner recommends.
"Plan B One Step is a safe, over-the-counter emergency contraception option available without a prescription," she says. "It would dramatically reduce the risks of unintended pregnancy if used within 72 hours of the unprotected sex. It is not a long-term solution to the need for birth control, but it may be appropriate for women at high risk right now."
Brasner's final advice? Don't assume the worst, even if your pills were part of the recall. 
"Contact your pharmacist to find out what the options are for replacement and contact your gynecologist if you have specific concerns," she says.
Have you checked your birth control pills yet? Be sure that you do!



Jennipher Walters is the CEO and co-founder of the healthy living websites and A certified personal trainer, lifestyle and weight management coach and group exercise instructor, she also holds an MA in health journalism and regularly writes about all things fitness and wellness for various online publications.


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