November 25, 2008

DT Terrifying Tuesday: Powdered Formula Is A Preemie's Best Source For Deadly Meningitis??

Ho-Lee smokes.

At least 17 cases of spinal meningitis, a potentially fatal or debilitating brain infection, can be attributed to the use of powdered formula or preemie nutrient supplements. The cases have happened in both NICU and home situations, and doctors and health experts believe that number is under-reported because people--and not just parents, but doctors and neonatal nurses, too--are often unaware of the potential risks powdered formula can pose to infants with weak or under-developed immune systems.

Reporters from The Beacon News, a Chicago Sun-Times group paper explain that because powdered formula cannot be sterilized, the FDA recommends it not be used for premature babies or kids with weak immune systems unless--and why there's a giant, squishy qualification on the warning like this, I have no idea--unless there's no other alternative.

Of course, there are plenty of alternatives to powdered formula, in the NICU or otherwise. But for some reason, the FDA decided in 2002 to not issue a straightforward warning against powdered formula's threat to some kids. Formula makers, predictably, support the FDA's recommendation word for word. And since they're involved in lawsuits from parents whose kids have been killed or irreparably brain-damaged from infections, they're not saying anything else.

So read the article. Read the label. Check with the nurse and doctor whether your kid is receiving powdered formula or supplement. And then hope that the FDA will be able to address this situation in a way that makes medical sense.

Risky formula| Powdered infant milk linked to deadly form of meningitis in preemies [suburbanchicagonews.com via dt freakout correspondent sara]

3 Comments

And now melamine in US formula, too!

Trace amounts of melamine found in 1 formula sample [cnn]

For those who can the solution is very simple: breast feed, breast feed, breast feed.

Well there were some adverts made in the US warning formula was risky, but the formula companies got annoyed and they never aired! http://www.womenshealth.gov/breastfeeding/index.cfm?page=adcouncil

You might find this blog interesting http://boycottnestle.blogspot.com/ not only concerned with breastfeeding but safe bottlefeeding.

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