Death, blindness, eye drops recall: bacterial infections in Florida, Texas, other states
A eye drops recall pulling two brands of artificial tears are the latest development in what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention calls an outbreak of “extensively drug resistant” bacteria in Florida, New York, Texas, California and eight other states.
Here’s what you need to know from the CDC and FDA.
What eye drops are recalled?
Global Pharma Healthcare yanked all lots, all expiration dates of EzriCare and Delsam Pharma Artificial Tears (carboxymethylcellulose sodium) Lubricant Eye Drops, which were sold over the internet.
The EzriCare Artificial Tears have NDC No. 79503-0101-15 and UPC code 3 79503 10115 7.
The Delsam Pharma Artificial Tears have NDC No. 72570-121-15 and UPC code 72570-0121-15.
What’s the problem with these artificial tears?
“Use of contaminated artificial tears can result in the risk of eye infections that could result in blindness,” the Risk Statement in the Global Pharma-written, FDA-posted recall notice says.
The CDC says there’s an outbreak of “extremely drug-resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa” that’s hit 55 people in California, Florida, Texas, New York, Colorado, Connecticut, New Jersey, New Mexico, Nevada, Utah, Washington and Wisconsin. Of those 55, 35 people were in four healthcare facility clusters. The consequences have included hospitalization, cornea infection resulting in total vision loss and death from a bloodstream infection.
“Most patients reported using artificial tears,” the CDC said. “Patients reported more than 10 different brands of artificial tears, and some patients used multiple brands. The majority of patients who used artificial tears reported using EzriCare Artificial Tears, a preservative-free, over-the-counter product packaged in multidose bottles. CDC laboratory testing identified the presence of the outbreak strain in opened EzriCare bottles with different lot numbers collected from two states.”
What should you do now?
Stop using the eye drops and return them to your seller for a full refund.
If you have questions about the EzriCare recall, call Aru Pharma at 518-738-7602 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, Monday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Eastern time.
If you have questions about the Delsam recall, call Delsam at 866-826-1309 or e-mail email@example.com, Monday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Eastern time.
If you’ve had any medical problems from this or any other drug, first see a medical professional. Then, let the FDA know via its MedWatch Adverse Event page or by filling out a form you can get by calling 800-332-1088.