Some Kotex tampons have been recalled after reports that the feminine-care product was unraveling and coming apart inside consumers' bodies.
Kimberly-Clark, which manufacturers personal-care products, announced Tuesday that the regular absorbency U by Kotex Sleek Tampons have been recalled in the United States and Canada because of “a quality-related defect,” explaining that some consumers reported having to seek medical attention “to remove tampon pieces left in the body.”
The company said in a news release that some consumers also reported irritation, infections, injuries and abdominal pain among other issues.
Kimberly-Clark said the tampons under recall were manufactured from Oct. 7, 2016, to Oct. 16, 2018, and were distributed from Oct. 17, 2016, to Oct. 23, 2018, across the United States and Canada.
Consumers who have tampons labeled with certain lot numbers should not use them, and people who have experienced related symptoms should seek medical help, Kimberly-Clark said. Those lot numbers are listed here on the company’s website.
Kimberly-Clark did not immediately respond Wednesday to a request for further comment on the recall.
Typically, tampons that have been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration are considered safe to use. The FDA states on its website that “before any tampons can be sold, they must go through FDA review to determine whether they are substantially equivalent to, including as safe and effective as, a legally marketed tampon.”
In rare cases, a condition known as toxic shock syndrome can develop after tampon use, causing shock, renal failure or even death, according to the Mayo Clinic.
The FDA has listed certain precautions, such as practicing good hygiene, using tampons only during menstruation and changing them every four to eight hours.
Following news of the recall, Kimberly-Clark said it was taking action to prevent similar issues in the future.
“The safety of our consumers is our top priority,” it said in a Q&A online. “We are putting systems in place to prevent the occurrence of similar issues in the future.”