Drugmaker

Pharmacia

(PHA)

launched a voluntary recall of its injectable contraceptive Lunelle after learning from a physician that some of the syringes weren't properly filled, increasing the potential risk that it may fail to prevent conception.

Lunelle is a combined hormonal contraceptive that works like a birth-control pill and it is administered to women by a health care professional as a monthly injection. A less-potent dose of Lunelle may not be effective in preventing pregnancy, the company said. Pharmacia said it was advising women who have been using the hormone injections to consult a physician and use alternate methods of birth control

Lunelle packaged in vials and all other Pharmacia contraceptives on the market aren't affected by the recall, the company said. The affected batches were distributed throughout the U.S., Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands during 2002.

Its shares were recently up 52 cents, or 1.3%, at $39.90 during afternoon trading on the

New York Stock Exchange.