Health Canada sends warning to women taking Alesse birth control

Dec 8 2017, 5:13 pm

Health Canada is warning women who take Alesse 21 and 28 that the birth control may be ineffective due to broken or smaller-than-normal pills.

The following products fall under the warning:

  • Alesse 21 (DIN 02236974) Lot A2532, expires August 2018
  • Alesse 28 (DIN 02236975) Lot A3183, expires April 2019

“The blister packages for both contained an active (pink) pill that was roughly half the proper size,” said Health Canada in a statement.

birth control

Alesse 28 with broken pill/ Health Canada

birth control

Alesse 28 with broken pill/ Health Canada

Health Canada advises women taking Alesse to do the following:

  • Check your pills before and after taking them out of the blister package. Do not consume a pill if it looks unusual. Examine both sides of each pill thoroughly for anything unusual before taking it (such as, a different (paler) colour, jagged edges, or the pill is broken or smaller than normal). It may not be immediately obvious from looking at the blister package that there is a problem with the pills, as the underside of the pill cannot be seen while in the blister pack.
  • If you have a package with an unusual pill, return it to your pharmacy for a replacement package.
  • Do not stop taking your birth control pills as this may result in pregnancy. If you have questions or concerns about your birth control product, talk to a health care professional, including about alternatives. Talk to a health care professional if you have any questions or concerns about your birth control product.

Report any unusual packages to Pfizer Canada and to Health Canada.

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