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Moldy smell prompts Tylenol caplets recall

TRENTON, N.J. —Tylenol caplets are again being recalled by Johnson & Johnson after some consumers were sickened by ingesting the pills or smelling a musty or moldy odor on the bottles.

Johnson & Johnson's McNeil Consumer Healthcare unit received some complaints from people who reported nausea, stomach pain, vomiting and diarrhea after taking the pills, a spokeswoman said Monday.

This makes 13 recalls in barely a year by the health care giant, mostly for more serious problems with its nonprescription drugs, contact lenses, blood glucose test strips and hip implants.

It's the fifth time that the New Brunswick, N.J.-based company has recalled nonprescription medicines because of consumer complaints about an unpleasant odor.

The moldy odor is thought to be due to the presence of trace amounts of a chemical called 2,4,6-tribromoanisole, McNeil said in a statement.

Previously, the company said the chemical was on wooden shipping pallets that it has stopped using after Jan. 15.

Asked if that was again the case with the latest recalls, J&J spokeswoman Carol Goodrich said, "We've seen both.

"Some complaints have come in from smelling the bottles and some from ingesting the pills," Goodrich said.

She could not say whether any complaints from the prior recalls had involved people ingesting the pills.

The latest recall, announced Monday, covers Lot #BCM155 of Tylenol 8 Hour caplets in 50-count bottles.

Consumers who purchased product from the lot number should stop using the product and contact McNeil Consumer Healthcare at www.tylenol.com or 888-222-6036.

Rival drugmaker Pfizer Inc. also recalled a product recently because of a musty odor, pulling bottles of its top-selling cholesterol medicine Lipitor on Oct. 9.

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