Pfizer has recalled more than 4 million packages of Nurtec ODT, a prescription medicine used to treat migraines, due to risk of poisoning children because of faulty packaging.
“The packaging of the products is not child resistant, posing a risk of poisoning if the contents are swallowed by young children,” the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission said.
A Pfizer representative tells TODAY.com that the pharmaceutical company first discovered the faulty packaging and initiated the regulatory proceedings with the commission. The recall impacts nearly 4.2 million units of the medicine that has been distributed since it first came on the market in late 2021 through Pfizer’s cessation of distribution in March 2023.
The drugs are required to be sold in child-resistant packaging, as outlined by the Poison Prevention Packaging Act.
There have been no incidents or injuries reported in connection with the recall. The medicine in question has been sold at pharmacies around the country from December 2021 through March 2023, according to the commission.
“Consumers should immediately secure the recalled product out of the sight and reach of children and contact Pfizer for a free child resistant pouch to store the product,” the commission said. “Once the product is secured, consumers can continue to use it as directed.”
Nurtec ODT says Pfizer “is quickly working to create new packaging,” and in the meantime pharmacists “will place Nurtec ODT blister packages into vials with child-resistant lids when filling patient prescriptions.”
More than 3 million Americans call poison control each year, with centers getting a call about every 15 seconds, according to the National Capital Poison Center.
Experts recommend people keep personal care products, cosmetics and over-the-counter medications stored securely and out of reach of children.
“Child-resistant (packaging) doesn’t mean childproof — a lot of times we have parents contact us, and they’re completely thrown that their child accessed medication that was in a child-resistant container,” Kaitlyn Brown, PharmD, clinical managing director of America’s Poison Centers, told TODAY.com in February.
“These containers are designed to keep a majority of children out of products, but given the right amount of time and child, they’ll be able to open it.”
Updated March 20, 2023, 10:31 A.M. EDT: This story was updated to clarify the history of the recall and status of the recalled product.