Children's Tylenol liquid recalled after bacteria is found


Parents: Check your medicine cabinets. Tylenol is quietly recalling batches of children and infant Tylenol liquid made between April 2008 and June 2008 after bacteria was found in one of the raw materials used to make the product.

McNeil Consumer Healthcare, the subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson that makes Tylenol, asserts all of its products now on the market are safe and that the bacteria found in the raw material never made it into any of its products.

"It was decided, as a precaution, to recall all product that utilized any of the raw material manufactured at the same time as the raw material that tested positive for the bacteria," McNeil said in a letter to health care professionals. "Please note: No bacteria has been detected in finished product and the finished product has met all specifications."

The issue only involves Tylenol's liquid products, the company said, not its "Meltaway" line.

The letter to doctors was posted to the Tylenol Professional website last week, and an abbreviated acknowledgment was posted today on McNeil Consumer Healthcare's Tylenol site. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, which McNeil said it "consulted" with, had no information about the recall on its site as of today.

UPDATE (9/25): The FDA has posted a notice of the recall, referring consumers to the notice sent to medical professionals.

"The company is implementing this voluntary recall at the warehouse and retail levels, because examination of one of the inactive ingredients did not meet internal testing requirements," the company wrote. "However, the packaged product, shipped to retailers by the company, has met all specifications."

The lot numbers are on the bottom of the box the Tylenol came in, as well as on the sticker that goes around the bottle. A list of all 21 products subject to the recall can be found here.

Those with the products who have questions are asked to call McNeil's Consumer Call Care Center at 800-962-5357 weekdays between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. Eastern Time. If you have given one of the products to a child and have concerns, McNeil suggests contacting your doctor.

Unlike most recalls, McNeil does not make any suggestions for returning or disposing of the product. However, in its note to doctors, McNeil said anyone calling the toll-free number will be given a coupon for a free replacement bottle.