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Paul Kiesel
Paul Kiesel
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KV Pharmaceutical and Ethex Corporation: We've Got an Oversized Pill Problem

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Two days before Christmas, KV Pharmaceutical Co. lost half its value in New York trading after the drugmaker, announcing a fourth recall of medicines that may contain excess doses, stopped shipping prescription tablets, according to Bloomberg News.

When asked how many pills were affected or how many lots had improperly sized tablets of medicine, David Van Vliet, KV’s interim CEO, said, "We’re not sure that there are any problems with these products."

Hmm…?

If there isn’t anything wrong with what KV and its subsidiary company Ethex were shipping out to the public, then why would the company risk further economic damage, and take a large material hit to its operating procedures, as it did on November 13 when the company was unable to file its Q3 earnings because of an October and November drug recall (oversized morphine sulfate tablets)? Because the two companies are cogent that some, maybe not all, of the drugs that were being shipped out were, once again, oversized. And because the last thing a company like KV needs is someone to ingest a double dosage of morphine sulfate (which can result in death or at the least drug dependency) or one of its other 17 drugs that have been affected by recalls this past year.

For the acting CEO of KV to hastily halt shipments, based on a hunch, seems ridiculous. Mr. Van Vliet has to be aware that there are fundamental problems at KV and Ethex (especially when it comes to quality control), because this was the fourth time in 2008 the company had to suspend large shipments of its drugs, due to carelessness of the tablets being oversized.