Manufacturers Being Sued Over Cow’s Milk Infant Formula
November 11, 2021
Phillips Law Group is investigating claims against companies like Abbot Laboratories and Mead Johnson & Company about cow’s milk-based infant formulas. Thousands of infants who were given this type of formula have developed a condition called necrotizing enterocolitis.
Despite the U.S. Surgeon General and American Academy of Pediatrics warning that cow’s milk-based formulas should never be given to pre-term infants, Abbot and Mead are still marketing these products as safe. This has led to lawsuits against the manufacturers.
Some of the cow’s milk-based infant formulas that are still on the market include:
- Similac Special Care ”“ Abbot Laboratories
- Enfamil NeuroPro EnfaCare Infant Formula ”“ Mead Johnson
- Enfamil Human Milk Fortifier ”“ Mead Johnson
- Similac Go & Grow ”“ Abbot Laboratories
Dangers of Cow’s Milk-Based Formulas
Parents of premature or low birth weight infants often turn to infant formula to help supplement nutrition. Premature babies often have trouble nursing and need help addressing medical conditions caused by being born premature.
However, cow’s milk-based formula is dangerous for infants because it does not provide enough iron, vitamin C and other nutrients to meet an infant’s needs. Additionally, infants cannot digest it as easily as breast milk or other types of infant formula. This can put undue stress on an infant’s kidneys and result in severe illness, such as necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC).
NEC causes infants’ intestinal tissue to die and may cause holes in the intestines, which could allow bacteria to get into the abdomen. This can result in severe health issues, including:
- Peritonitis (infection in the abdomen)
- Narrowing of the intestines
- Short bowel syndrome, making it harder for infants to absorb nutrients and fluids
Often, infants with NEC need surgery to repair the damage. In some cases, infants could die, but if the condition is not fatal, they may suffer growth failure and neurodevelopmental problems.
There are several symptoms of NEC parents should watch for:
- Diarrhea or bloody stool
- Not gaining weight
- Refusal to eat
- Green vomit
- Yellow vomit
- Pain in the abdomen
- Different heart rate or blood pressure
- Changes to breathing or body temperature
Research has shown premature infants who are fed only breast milk, without any cow’s milk products have a much lower risk of developing this condition or dying.
Lawsuits against Abbot and Mead Johnson claim these companies failed to properly warn consumers and medical providers about the risks of their products. Lawsuits also claim the companies knew or should have known of these dangers and that they were unreasonable.
By filing claims, victims may be able to recover compensation to pay for their child’s medical treatment, including the cost of ongoing treatment to manage long-term health problems. While compensation cannot change what happened, it can be essential as families try to move forward.
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