Tue, 06 Mar 2007 18:23 UTC
Chicago - Bausch & Lomb said on Tuesday it has started a limited recall of its ReNu MultiPlus contact lens solution, just 10 months after its global recall of another popular contact lens solution linked to a serious eye infection.
Bausch said the MultiPlus solution contained traces of iron, which could discolor the solution and shorten its shelf life. It has not had any reports of health problems associated with use of the solution.
The recall comes as the company continues to struggle with the financial fallout from its sweeping recall last May of the ReNu with MoistureLoc solution, which was linked with a rare but potentially blinding fungal eye infection.
Bausch said the MultiPlus solution was made at the company's plant in Greenville, South Carolina. The company believes virtually all of the affected product, manufactured about a year ago, has already been used by consumers.
The recall involves 12 lots of the product. Spokeswoman Barbara Kelley said about 1 million bottles were distributed in the United States. The company is also recalling about 500,000 bottles distributed in Canada, Latin America, Korea and Taiwan, she said.
"The root cause is a single batch of raw ingredients." she said, adding that no patients have reported any problems with the solution. "This is a very different situation than MoistureLoc," she said.
"It doesn't sound like a major problem," said Dr. Penny Asbell, a professor of ophthalmology at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York. "I think they probably are being more vigilant in evaluating their manufacturing practices."
The company said it has notified the U.S. Food and Drug Administration about the new recall.
Bausch advised consumers to discard any lens care solution that appears to be discolored. The recalled lots all carry the expiration date "2008 - 03" on the bottle.
Consumers can get more information on the recall at the company's Web site www.bausch.com/productrecall or by calling the consumer affairs line (1-866-259-8255).
Bausch said it did not expect the costs associated with the recall to have a significant impact on its financial results.
The recall comes as the company announced its 2006 preliminary financial results. Revenue fell about 3 percent to $2.29 billion, mainly due to lower vision care sales.
The company projects 2007 sales would rise about 8 percent to $2.5 billion.
Earlier this month, Bausch said it had delayed filing its 2006 annual report as it took extra time to restate its 2005 results. The company now expects to report its 2006 results by April 30.
"We believe Bausch & Lomb continues to struggle, given the operational challenges associated with recalls and an ongoing financial restatement process," said BMO analyst Joanne Wuensch.
Shares of Bausch & Lomb were up 99 cents, or nearly 2 percent, to $51.41 in midday trade on the New York Stock Exchange.