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What is the status of the product stability tests for suspect lots of Norplant contraceptive implants? Implant marketer Wyeth-Ayerst Pharmaceuticals of Philadelphia continues to work with the Food and Drug Administration in conducting evaluation tests, and company officials hope to have an update soon, states Doug Petkus, company spokesman.
Wyeth-Ayerst Laboratories issued an advisory in August 2000 that alerted providers that routine shelf-life stability laboratory tests indicated product from certain specified lots might not release enough levonorgestrel to deliver effective, ongoing contraception.
"For now, it is important for your readers [to know] that women who began using Norplant before Oct. 20, 1999, are not affected by this situation, and their Norplant system remains an effective long-term contraceptive option," states Petkus. "Women who received Norplant from the affected lots are advised to use a backup nonhormonal contraceptive method; upon request, the company will cover the costs of backup birth control until more conclusive info is available."