THE WOODLANDS, Texas — It has been a worrying week for some families after a warning by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration about three popular baby formulas.
A mother from The Woodlands is among them.
Earlier this month, the FDA announced it is investigating consumer complaints of cronobacter and salmonella infections. All of the cases are reported to have consumed powdered infant formula produced at Abbott Nutrition’s Sturgis, Michigan facility.
The powdered formulas the FDA has warned customers not to use are Similac, Alimentum, or EleCare if: the first two digits of the code are 22 through 37; and the code on the container contains K8, SH or Z2; and the expiration date is 4-1-2022 (APR 2022) or later.
Ashley Jove, a mother from The Woodlands, said she’s concerned about her 6-month-old son, Luca, because he drank several tubs of one of the infected formulas and has had diarrhea for the past three weeks.
“It’s terrifying because, you know, he can’t tell me what’s wrong,” Jove said.
Jove learned about the recall a few days ago and checked online to see if her formula was on the recall list, which it was.
“I just completely freaked out,” Jove said.
Dr. Suma Manjunath, a pediatrician with Kelsey Seybold Clinic, explains what chronobacter is.
“It is basically a bacteria that is present in human feces,” Manjunath said.
When ingested, it can make a person, especially young children or those who are immunocompromised, ill.
The FDA’s website also warns that the bacteria can cause severe, life-threatening infections like sepsis or meningitis. Symptoms may include poor feeding, irritability, temperature changes, jaundice, grunting breaths and abnormal movements. Chronobacter infection may also cause bowel damage and spread through the blood to other parts of the body.
“We have had several concerned parents who have been calling,” Manjunath said. “Rightfully so.”
However, Manjunath adds that most children will be able to fight these bacteria off.
This week though, when Luca Jova spiked a high fever and started vomiting, his mother took him to the ER and told them about the formula.
“There were a lot of mothers there for the same exact reason,” Jove said.
Jove is still waiting on the results of a stool sample to see if Luca has a bacterial illness.
Manjunath said the illnesses can mimic stomach viruses, but if symptoms are severe, she advises parents to call their doctor.
For more information about the recall, click here.