Pfizer Faux Pas

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Pfizer Headquarters - TheWiseGuys.comSo how many of you ladies (and gentlemen) freaked out when you heard about the Pfizer recall on Lo Ovral 28 (ethinyl estradiol and norgestrel) with a certain lot number? Like the millions of other people who apparently used these bad pills, I sure did. So did my husband. We would like children some day, but we are not ready by any means right now. We flipped out when we heard. I was at work, and my husband was on his afternoon break when he caught it on the news and immediately messaged me. At that moment, it all made sense!

To backtrack a little bit here…

For a few months, especially last Fall, my period was out of wack. I would start before the sugar pill week, or after I started a new pack, and other strange things that aren’t supposed to happen while on the pill. I’m on it because I get debilitating period pain and the only way to prevent it is to be on the pill for three months straight at a time. And all last Fall, my pills weren’t working like they were supposed to! Finally, in January things started straightening out and working properly. Then my husband messaged me. And told me my pills were that lot number. It all came together like glue.

We’re on the process of getting reimbursed for those pills, along with two pregnancy tests that I brought on the orders of my doctor and Plan B. It’s a long process. We’re getting the runaround from Akrimax (the company that distributed the pills), Stericycle (the company handling the claims) and Pfizer themselves. I don’t trust Pfizer any more, so I’m looking for a new birth control pill, and I want to be reimbursed for the pills I bought just recently even though they are not in the same lot number as my older packets that were recalled. I can’t trust that these pills are fine, when it took several months for the recall to take place AFTER the mistake occurred with the recalled lot. How do I know the same thing won’t happen again in two months? While I agree that this could happen at any company, I should be able to reasonably trust a company to do their job properly. And that trust was lost when this happened. So I’m moving on to another birth control pill that is made by a different company.

I’m writing a letter to the legal department of Pfizer, on the advice of about the 7th woman I spoke to from Pfizer’s Medical Information department. I was told to spell out how I was affected by this whole thing and ask Pfizer to please reimburse me for all the trouble. My letter may be more demanding than that. If you want to write a letter to them here’s their information:

Pfizer, Inc
ATTN: Legal Department
235 East 42nd Street
New York, NY 10017

For the record, why I am waiting to get in and see my gyno, my local pharmacist was able to find me a suitable generic version of Lo/Ovral that is not made by Pfizer or Akrimax. It is called Cryselle 28 and it can be substituted if you have an existing prescription on file since it’s scientifically the same medication. It may or may not be available by now as more people request it from their pharmacies.

10 Responses to “Pfizer Faux Pas”

  1. kayla

    I had all those symptoms that you did as well plus many others and unfortunately I had a unexpected pregnancy and found out at the beginning of February I found out I to had a affect lot 🙁

  2. Amanda

    I’m really sorry to hear that. :-\ What are you doing? Have you contacted Pfizer? What has their response been like?

  3. Caroll

    This is flat out scarey this kind of thing happening is crazy because I thought there would be better REAL quality control.If there are babies born because of this Pfizer should pay for these babies for a lifetime and that is a fact.


    I hope ALL the patients that were affected by this recall gets reimbursement for any out of pocket expenses for any deductable or copays that they had to pay from Pfizer.

  5. Jane

    Thank you for posting their contact information. It isn’t anywhere else on-line.

  6. Haras

    I just wanted you to know that after weeks of digging without getting anywhere your post really helped me out. I just got Fedexed my reimbursement check from Pfizer after using your contact information to state my case to them. Thank you again.

  7. TIm C.

    My girlfriend got pregnant because of this. We can’t afford an attorney and don’t want to give the 30% to a contingency lawyer so we are doing this on our own. We found contact information for Pfizer’s Legal Department on the web (THANK YOU TO THE WISE GUYS) and sent a demand letter to Pfizer’s Legal Office. We included all of our costs but did not ask for damages because they would probably fight that and also we wanted a child anyway. Just not right now. Anyway I hope the contact info listed here gets out there more to help someone else because it was hard for us to find.

  8. Nicki

    Thank you for the info. Please let us know if you’ve had any success.
    I think these pills are more defective then they are aware of because of symptoms that I’ve never had from missing one pill.
    I found that my mail order pharmacy will not replace the pills because they said they didn’t know they were defective when they disbursed them. They know now and even sent me a letter about it, but said that is not their problem because they are not handling the recall. My insurance will not cover a new Rx because I already filled one for that three month time period. I have to pay for a physician office visit and replacements out of pocket.

    • Amanda


      I suggest you draft a letter stating the above (what you said here). Include a receipt for your costs incurred and any other documentation you may have such as refusals from insurance companies and mail order pharmacies. Mail it to the Pfizer Legal Department address in the original post. Send it certified mail with return receipt (the green card) so you have a tracking # and signature confirmation it was received. Give them about a week and you should receive a response. They take this seriously, for the people that take the time to go straight to the source (Pfizer Legal) because they know you could sue them for more expenses than just what you’re actually incurring here. Best wishes.

  9. Steph

    I had a baby boy do to this error. Like you my periods were irregular, but I didn’t think to much of it as they have been like that before. I found out the end of July 2011 I was pregnant and in January I believe it was I heard about the recall. My husband thought that I had missed days, but as I take other medications daily I know I didn’t. We fall below the poverty line and I am going to college, so this was very bad timing for a child. I love him to death and wouldn’t change having him, but boy it would have been nicer if he came after I finished college in 3 years.

    I would be interested if you know anything about a class action lawsuit, but seeing as they say it isn’t 100% I am not sure anything can really be done to help with the cost of raising a baby.


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