Birth control pills are the subject of a recall announced by the the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) yesterday.

The manufacturer of the pills, Qualitest Pharmaceuticals, is performing a voluntary recall that involves several lots of birth control pills. The problem is related to a packaging error. Apparently, the rotating blister dials were mistakenly turned 180 degrees from where they should be. This means the placebos (inactive) pills, which usually are taken in the fourth week of the cycle – are at the beginning of the cycle in the affected packaging.

“The worst pill to miss in any pack of pills is the very first pill.” said Dr. Marjorie Greenfield, division chief of general obstetrics and gynecology at University Hospitals Case Medical Center in Cleveland. “And so now you’re missing the first four or the first seven so you will probably release an egg that month.” It was noted by Dr. Greenfield that most experienced birth control pill takers would be likely to notice the different color pills at the beginning of the cycle.

The recall affects 8 different kinds of birth control pills, including pills sold under the generic brands Cyclafem, Emoquette, Gildess, Orsythia, Previfem and Tri-Previfem.

Only certain lots of the above brands are affected, according to reports. Doctors, pharmacists and consumers are being asked to call Qualitest at 1-877-300-6153 for additional information and product identification.