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Eyedrops recalled

17th May 2006

17052006_Eye2.jpgBausch & Lomb has issued a complete worldwide withdrawal of its Renu with MoistureLoc eyedrops after they were linked to causing blindness.

Health authorities in the US, Singapore and Hong Kong had previously linked the MoistureLoc drops to outbreaks of Fusarium keratitis, a rare fungal infection, which can cause blindness. The worldwide withdrawal comes only three weeks after the drops were taken off the shelves in a handful of markets even though the link has not been established in all the product's markets.

Initially, the recall could cost Bausch & Lomb as much as $70m though the company has said it would also incur legal and marketing costs which have not yet been estimated. Last year, the drops contributed about $100m to Bausch's sales which were $2.2bn in 2004.

Before the recall, news of the product's risks had already shaved almost a third of the eyecare company's valuation in the previous three weeks.

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