The FDA recalled a neck pain relief device recently after reports that the neck massager posed a serious risk of death or injury. The ShoulderFlex Massager was recalled by its manufacturer back in August 2011 but the Food and Drug Administration is concerned that many of those who bought the device remain unaware of its potential risks, including the risk of strangulation when using the device for neck pain or back pain whilst lying down.
Procedural Failure for Neck Massager Recall
ShoulderFlex has been blamed for at least one death, and one near-death, caused by strangulation, along with several serious injuries due to hair, clothing, and jewelry becoming trapped in the massager’s ‘fingers.’ King International, the manufacturer of ShoulderFlex has since gone out of business and the 800 recall number no longer works. There is a worry that the neck pain relief device could still be on sale in some stores as the store owners are unaware of the recall. Other outlets for the dangerous massage device include catalogs and internet stores which entice customers with descriptions of ShoulderFlex’s benefits for deep tissue massage of the neck, shoulders, and back.
Disposing of the Faulty Device
Anyone who owns such a device is advised to stop using it immediately and the FDA’s Office of Compliance and Center for Devices and Radiological Health have advised healthcare providers not to recommend the ShoulderFlex massager and for businesses to remove it from their shelves. Despite the recall by King International, the subsequent collapse of the device manufacturer’s business means that certain protocols were not followed, posing a potential threat to public safety. Safe disposal of the device means removing the massage fingers and then disposing of these, and the power supply, separately to the body of the ShoulderFlex device. If you have to dispose of your neck massager due to this recall then consider treating your neck pain symptoms with one of these neck and back pain relief devices.