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Case Study Johnson & Johnson

2404 words - 10 pages

Case Study - Johnson and JohnsonIn 1982 Johnson and Johnson, the pharmaceutical company that makes Tylenol announced a nationwide recall of Tylenol; they recalled 31 million bottles, which resulted in a loss of 100 million dollars. This recall was secondary to the death of seven people in the Chicago area after using Tylenol. An investigation reveled the poisoning were found to be that of an outside source. The Tylenol was contaminated with cyanide from an outside source.Johnson and Johnson's response to the poisonings was to face the public, take responsibility, and attempt to regain the marketplace. Johnson and Johnson began a massive campaign, doling out coupons, and redesigning the ...view middle of the document...

This incident, while tragic, was only the beginning of the trouble for the beleaguered company. Only a few years later the company was faced with another string of tragedies with Tylenol pain reliever. In 1989 a 5 year old child, Lacy Keele, was given 4 extra strength tablets. This was more than twice the recommended dosage. This heartbreaking overdose was fatal. A short time later in the early 1990s, another child was given an overdose of the medicine. At just 14 months, Sophie Regosin-Hodges, had her liver severely damaged by an overdose of Tylenol drops. "The drops were three and half times stronger than the children's medicine." (Anonymous, 2002) Although young Sophie would survive her encounter with the overdose, she had to have a liver transplant and subsequently required the use of immunosuppressant drugs for the rest of her life.Unfortunately, for Johnson and Johnson, Tylenol related liver damage and deaths would continue over the next few years. In 1993 another case in which a person taking Tylenol was found to have damaged his liver affected the company. Antonio Benedi only took 10 extra strength Tylenol in 4 days, much below what should have caused Mr. Benedi any problems. Mr. Benedi was a recovering alcoholic and possibly already had liver damage that the Tylenol further damaged. Like Sophie years before, Antonio lived but required a liver transplant. Hundreds of cases of liver damage and many cases of death were attributed to acetaminophen, the main ingredient in Tylenol. "Many analysts felt that Johnson and Johnson's label should have been more explicit, in warning customers." (Anonymous, 2002) These cases along with recommendations from the aforementioned analysts prompted the Federal Drug Administration to take a closer look at Tylenol and its packaging.Initially, Johnson and Johnson was hesitant to change their labeling to reflect more precise warnings; fearing to do so might reflect poorly on their product. However, in the last quarter of 1997 the company was given more inspiration to do just that. In September of 1997 the FDA recommended labeling changes for any medicine containing acetaminophen. Johnson and Johnson complied with the FDA's recommendation. Coupled with the label changes Johnson and Johnson also bought advertisements on television and magazines informing people of the correct dosages for Tylenol. Even with these changes, the pain was not over for the makers of Tylenol. In 2002, the company was forced to pay 5 million dollars in reparations to a family who lost their 1 year old son due to an overdose of infants Tylenol. "The Duson's said they did not realize the medication was concentrated to three times the strength of regular Children's Tylenol…" (Anonymous, 2006) This family assumed, as many would, that the infant's version of the medication would be less potent than the children's version. Up to this point, the labeling on Tylenol still needed a clearer definition on the side effects, and dangers of the...

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