Thousands of women may have been exposed to faulty pregnancy tests that wrongly indicate they are not having a baby.
The Independent reports that:
There are believed to be 44 potentially erroneous tests but tens of thousands of women may have been given the product in the past three months before the problem was spotted.
The NHS is unsure which women received the faulty tests and one general hospital is seeking to alert 1,400 women. Tracing the women is important in case they endanger their baby by drinking heavily or by engaging in other unsuitable activity or behaviour.
The fault was spotted by one, unnamed, hospital, which contacted Inverness Medical Innovations. The American global healthcare group then began an investigation that culminated in a product recall on 31 May, when it wrote to 50 hospitals.
These tests should indicate any pregnancy, but they are especially designed to spot ectopic pregnancies, where the baby develops outside the uterus, most commonly in the fallopian tubes. Many such pregnancies end without the mother even knowing. But they can be dangerous, hence the use of Clearview HGC by accident and emergency departments.