Johnson & Johnson Issues Massive Recall of Over the Counter Medications

by Victor Lopez
NewsWest 9

MIDLAND--For the second time in less than a month, stores and pharmacies across the country are being asked to pull certain drugs off their shelves.  That's after reports of people getting sick from a moldy smell coming from the bottles of popular meds like Tylenol and Motrin.

Even though federal regulators say the manufacturer didn't act fast enough, once the problem was reported, professionals NewsWest 9 spoke to said, they're doing what they're told, when they're told.

According to Nate Gammage, R.Ph., staff pharmacist for Graham's Pharmacy in Midland, "There was a big enough concern that they wanted to do a voluntary recall on Tylenol Arthritis medication."

Over 80 different types of Tylenol, Motrin, Benadryl, even Rolaids are being yanked from store and pharmacy shelves to avoid any one else from getting sick.  The call comes directly from the distributor to the retailer.

"Either through our computer system or they'll give us a call and tell us they've had a recall on a particular medication.  They'll give us the lot numbers and we'll go check our inventory to see which medications we may have.  If we do, then we pull them off the shelf, immediately," Gammage explained.

Gammage says they've gotten some calls from concerned customers on this second recall by Johnson and Johnson, "Out of both of the recalls, we didn't have any of the lot numbers, so we're okay with both recalls."

Some stores, like HEB, tell NewsWest 9 they've been contacted by their corporate offices.

Odessa store manager David Dowd said, "We are aware of the recall.  We have pulled all products from our shelves."

Graham's Pharmacy is going the extra mile to get back some of the items that may have walked out of their store, "If we can track anybody that could have purchased the medication, then we would have called them and told them to bring it back in.  Then, also, we would accept any medication that we have sold to the customer and then send it back to the manufacturer," Gammage said.

Even if you didn't buy it from them, Gammage says you should be able to take it to the place you did buy it and get a full refund.  Gammage adds, at this stage of the game, no one should be worried about buying or taking over the counter medications, "Anything that is on the shelf, as of (Monday), the store should have already checked their lot numbers and it should be safe."