December 23, 2010

Test Strip Recall Relion, Precision Xtra and other Abbott Strips

Aboott Laboratories has just issued a huge recall for blood testing strips which read low. The strips take too long to absorb the drop of blood.

The list of affected lots is given here:

Further information can be found here:

Here is their stated policy, though it would have been nice if they'd explained HOW to go about getting replacement strips:
Abbott Diabetes Care will replace affected strips at no charge with new product equal to the amount currently in the customer’s possession. Customers are advised to return all affected product currently in their possession. If customers have a partial package of product, Abbott Diabetes Care will provide a complete package of product as replacement.
They provide this customer care phone number:


The company seems to have gone out of its way to avoid explaining on the web site how to get your replacement strips. This makes me wonder if they will try to get customers to phone and then state on a recorded line that they have not suffered any injury from the defective strips before giving recall instructions as did the makers of the defective Aviva strips I purchased.

It also looks like you are out of luck if you have already used up these defective strips. If you have been seeing lower than expected numbers while using strips made by this company treat them with caution.



gmth said...

Thanks for the heads up. I called, waited on hold for about half an hour, and when I finally got through to the CSR I was told my lot was not affected. This despite the fact that it was listed on the website as one of the recalled lots. I told the CSR this, he put me on hold again to check with his supervisor, and then came back to tell me again that my lot wasn't affected. I had to walk him through Abbott's own website to show him that my lot number was in fact listed there. He said he didn't understand what was going on, from his end it looked like my lot was unaffected, but he would send me a replacement box of strips anyway. What a hassle. They really don't seem to have it together very well at Abbott. For what it's worth, though, they did not ask me to state that I had not suffered any injury from the bad strips. I'm not even sure the call was recorded... if it was, I was not advised as such.

Jenny said...

Well, if they keep telling people their strips aren't on the recall, they'll save their stockholders a lot of money.

Glad to hear they didn't try to get the signed confession.

Geoffrey Levens said...

Well, ok. 10 minutes on hold, then another 3-5 minutes while operator "verified" my lot number and supposedly I will receive replacement strips within 5 days in the mail.
Jenny, many thanks to you for posting this. I do not watch television nor follow any of the main stream media so I had not even heard about this, though I was very suspicious of my readings of late.

Ventura Bill said...

Interesting though my numbers are not low. Wish I could get them lower. I am ready in a few days to get some more of the Relion Ultima strips but wondering if I might need to try another source like Kroger whose strips cost about the same last time I checked.

Thanks for the notice. Your site has become a valuable resource for me.

Authorfriendly said...

Thanks so much for that notice, I missed hearing it on the news and wouldn't have heard if it weren't for you.Of course it makes me worry that my blood sugars aren't as well controlled as I thought, but hey the strips cant effect my H1C, so I guess I am still on track.

Helen said...

I heard about this - and thank you for posting this info.

I'd noticed this problem with Relion strips for a while - it doesn't happen with every strip, just the ones that fill slowly. I'd always retest if that happened. I figured it was a "get what you pay for" scenario, although apparently it's been happening with the premium-priced strips as well. I should have called about it some time ago - I was just kind of dealing with it (and I don't use insulin or sulfonylureas) and didn't think of the wider implications.

I switch between my prescription strips & meter and these and did have not noticed my glucose readings *generally* being lower with the Relion - in general, they seem slightly higher.

I just bought my current package last week and it's on the recall list.

Jenny said...

I clicked the wrong link and accidentally deleted Ventura Bill's comment which I am reposting from the email that reported it to me:


I mentioned it to the pharmacist at Walmart in Oxnard, CA and she said others had called too. But, I did not get any info on replacements. Luckily, I was down to the last two so I started a new lot (not on recall) and my first reading was at 93 which surprised me as earlier in the day the numbers were a bit higher. I guess I will have to watch that in future. Thanks again Jenny and all.

Ventura Bill

Jim Purdy said...

I got an e-mail from Wal-Mart about the recall, or I would not have known about it. I was on the e-mail list because I had ordered it through the wal-mart site. Unfortunately for people who just bought strips off a store shelf, they would not have been contacted by email.

And the hassles at the store were mildly irritating. Even though my lot number was recalled, the store computers did not accept the code, and it had to be entered manually.

Finally, the store manager required my photo ID!

Why did they need my ID? It was the product that was defective, not me.

After last year's massive recall of Slim-Fast cans, and all the frequent drug recalls, why should anybody trust any commercial products?

chricks said...

I received a new meter of a different brand. Out of curiosity, I tested with both meters. The Precision Xtra with the defective strips was showing about 20 points higher than the other meter. I didn't know the strips were defective.