What’s in Your Cabinet – Are You Paying Attention to Drug Recalls?

How would you know if a prescription or over-the-counter (OTC) drugs in your medicine cabinet was recalled today? Will your pharmacist call and tell you? Are you subscribed to any mailing lists that announce drug recalls? Do you regularly check recall lists for all of the medications and supplements in your home? Or, do you get your recall information from the nightly news? If you are not taking an active role in learning about recalls, you could have recalled medicines in your cabinet right now.

Your Pharmacist

It is always a good idea to cultivate a good relationship with your pharmacist. They are there to help, educate, and answer your questions.

When it comes to drug recalls, however, do not expect a phone call unless it is an urgent Class I recall. That is the most serious type of recall, and rare. Pharmacists are required to alert customers of this type of recall, but things can go wrong and you may not get the call. A typo in your file or even misdialing by pharmacy staff could mean that you miss out on an urgent alert. Also, your pharmacist will only call you about your prescription medications, since your OTC drugs are not tied to your personal information.

If you suspect that there may be a recall on your medication, calling your pharmacist is one of the fastest ways to find out for sure.

Checking with the FDA

You can check the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) website. It is a cumbersome process, especially if you are doing a general check on all of the drugs in your home. And, there is sometimes a delay in updating the information on the site.

Sign Up for Alerts

You can sign up for automatic email alerts of drug recalls and other types of recalls at Recalls.gov. And, keep in mind that most dangerous and defective drugs are not recalled. You can get alerts about recalls as well as news about dangerous drugs that have not been recalled by subscribing to informative sites such as US Recall News.

If you have been harmed by a dangerous medication, learn more about your rights by reading about Defective Drug Claims.

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