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Recall causing headaches long after being pulled from the market

We have looked at how a defective product can put people in danger when it remains on the market. Companies have a responsibility to make sure their products are safe and provide proper warnings for use. When these fail, residents in Florida and across the country can get hurt or sick and the product may need to be recalled.

After a recall, however, people continue to be affected by the unavailability of a product. Even when companies try to get a safer product out soon, it can take so long that consumers are left with few options. Six months ago, the migraine headache medicine Excedrin was pulled from the market after reports of contamination in the manufacturing plant.

Users of Excedrin rely on the medicine to relieve the symptoms associated with migraines. Some took Excedrin as soon as they felt a severe headache coming on and were able to prevent it from turning into a full-blown migraine. With the continued unavailability of the product, though, many sufferers are trying new - and in some cases, dangerous - alternatives.

People who stocked up on Excedrin prior to the recall are making a nice profit by selling their stash on sites like eBay. However, there are no guarantees for buyers regarding the legitimacy or safety on these third-party sites. Some people have tried generic medicines, and some even take the separate ingredients found in Excedrin at the same time, trying to achieve the relieving effects of the actual drug.

These alternative methods are no substitute for the real thing, however, and people are anxious for the return of Excedrin to store shelves. On the one hand, it is a good sign that Novartis, the company who makes Excedrin, is being cautious and deliberate with the return of the products. On the other hand, it has been six months and people who rely on these medicines are not sure how much longer they can wait.

While it is crucial that people have access to safe and reliable drugs, people continue to suffer when these products are pulled from the market. This is why it is important for companies to comply with safety procedures and standards from the beginning. When this fails to happen, people can get hurt and a product should be recalled.

Source: ABC News, "Migraine Sufferers Scramble for Relief After Excedrin Recall," Kim Carollo, July 10, 2012

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