One of the best-selling drugs in the world may have seen its generic form marred by the company that manufactures it. According to a recent recall from Ranbaxy Pharmaceuticals Inc., dozens of lots of the generic form of Lipitor may contain tiny glass particles. The potentially defective product could cause serious harm to those that ingest it and may lead to a product liability suit if the damage occurs. Consumers using the generic version of the cholesterol drug in Illinois should consult the recall to determine if they are at risk.
This is not the first time that Ranbaxy Pharmaceuticals has come under scrutiny from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Ranbaxy is the largest drug manufacturer in India and has seen drop-offs in the level of quality at its facilities in recent years, according to the FDA. Operations at those facilities are being monitored by the agency to make sure that the company does not attempt any illegal business maneuvers, which it may have already done. According to the FDA, the manufacturer lied about test results for at least 25 of its generic drugs.
Those reported manufacturing deficiencies began in 2006 and led to investigations as well as sanctions.
According to reports, the recall is for atorvastatin calcium and includes tablets in 10, 20 and 40 milligram doses. More than 40 lots of the drug have been recalled, most of them containing 90 pills per bottle. The recall indicates that three of the 41 lots contain 500 pills per bottle and the 80-milligram tablets are not affected. Medicine batches usually contain thousands of pills, so many generic Lipitor users may be exposed to the potential faults that forced this recall.
Consumers taking atorvastatin calcium should call their pharmacies and ask whether the prescription they received was manufactured by Ranbaxy. If this is the case, ask if your pills are part of the lots that were recalled.
Source: WAND, "Ranbaxy recalls generic Lipitor doses," Linda A. Johnson, Nov. 28, 2012