A second infant death may be linked to contaminated powdered infant formula prompting another lot of Similac formula to be recalled, according to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Some Similac, Alimentum and EleCare formulas are being recalled after four infants have had Cronobacter sakazakii infections and one had a Salmonella Newport infection after consuming the formula. The Abbott Nutrition powdered infant formulas were produced at the company’s Sturgis, Mich., facility and distributed nationwide and internationally.
Consumers who have one of these powdered formulas should look for the code printed on the product packaging near the expiration date. They should not use the formula if it meets three criteria:
- 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.
In addition, Similac PM 60/40 with lot code 27032K80 (can) / 27032K800 (case), is being recalled. It was distributed in the U.S. and Israel. Consumers can check if their formula is being recalled by visiting the company’s website and entering the lot code.
Families getting formula through the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infant and Children (WIC) should take the product to the store for a refund or exchange, or call the company at (800) 986-8540. The U.S. Department of Agriculture is granting additional flexibility to these families to ensure they can obtain formula.
The FDA recommends speaking with a child’s health care provider for recommendations if their regular formula is not available. Parents should never dilute infant formula or make their own. They also should not purchase imported formula online as it could be counterfeit, according to the FDA.
Cronobacter bacteria can cause sepsis or meningitis. Symptoms include poor feeding, irritability, temperature changes, jaundice, grunting breaths and abnormal movements. Cronobacter also may cause bowel damage. Salmonella can cause gastrointestinal illness and fever. Severe infections also may include aches, headaches, lethargy, rash and blood in the urine or stool.
Infants who have symptoms of a bacterial infection should contact their health care provider immediately. To report a complaint or adverse event, call an FDA consumer complaint coordinator or complete an electronic voluntary MedWatch form.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also is investigating Cronobacter sakazakii cases in children who consumed powdered formula in the 10 days prior to getting sick. Clinicians who have cared for these infants since November 2020 should email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- FDA warning on powdered infant formulas
- Information about the recall for families from HealthyChildren.org
- Information for families from HealthyChildren.org on infant formula shortages
- Information for WIC participants from the Department of Agriculture
- Information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Cronobacter infections linked to infant formula