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Utah mother believes son was sickened by recalled formula


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WEST JORDAN -- A West Jordan mother is angry and frustrated over the way drugmaker Abbott Laboratories has handled a massive recall of baby formula.

Jenny, who asked that her last name not be used, says her infant son Jack was first introduced to Similac formula at the hospital, so she kept using it after bringing him home. Her son was not having any problems with eating until just over a week ago when she opened a brand-new container of formula.

The Similac formula Jenny purchased that was included in the recall
The Similac formula Jenny purchased that was included in the recall

"We opened a new container of Similac a week ago Wednesday. By Wednesday night he was starting to be really, really fussy, eat a little bit less than he had normally been eating and he didn't sleep really well at all that night," Jenny said.

The upset stomach kept getting worse after each feeding. "And it all culminated this past Wednesday when he was vomiting about an hour or so after he had eaten," said Jenny.

It wasn't long after that Jenny learned about the Similac recall. Her son had just finished that container of formula and they tried to figure out if it was on the recall list, but were unable to get on Similac's website until Thursday. That's when they confirmed the container, along with several others they had purchased but not used, were recalled.


This is an infant's sole source of nutrition. He's eating four, five, six times a day. We're putting potentially contaminated food into our son all day, every day. That's horrible and unacceptable.

–Jenny


As a precaution, on Wednesday night Jenny and her husband switched their baby over to a different formula and saw an immediate difference. He drank a full bottle and slept through the entire night. He hasn't had any stomach problems since.

Jenny says they called their doctor, but an employee at the office said if the baby was doing fine now, not to worry about it. Jenny says the employee dismissed the vomiting as just a virus the child probably caught, but says she isn't so sure about her son having a virus since the baby hasn't left the house and she and her husband aren't sick.

What she's frustrated over the most is the lack of response from Abbot Nutrition, the company that makes the recalled formula. She's been trying repeatedly to get a hold of the company to get some answers, but has yet to receive a response.

There have also been media reports that an Abbott spokesperson said the possible contamination at one of their manufacturing plants was discovered just over a week ago. Jenny says if the company had issued the recall immediately, her son might not have gotten sick to the point he couldn't eat or sleep.

"If Abbott had known that Similac had been contaminated for a week before they let consumers know, that is absolutely unacceptable," she said. "It's not like adult food where maybe people are eating it, maybe they're not. This is an infant's sole source of nutrition. He's eating four, five, six times a day. We're putting potentially contaminated food into our son all day, every day. That's horrible and unacceptable."

With only an empty container left of the formula Jenny used while her son was sick, she doesn't think there's a way to ever prove it was the formula that caused her son's illness, but she said if it was the formula that would answer a lot of questions as to what their son suffered over the past week.

Attempts by KSL to contact Abbott Nutrition have not been successful.

E-mail: rjeppesen@ksl.com

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Randall Jeppesen

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