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Toxic Baby Formula Lawsuits / NEC Lawsuits

Many parents assume that infant formula is healthy and safe to feed their babies. But when premature newborns drink formula, the results can be deadly. Commercial bottle formulas have been linked to a potentially life-threatening condition called necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC).

The most common intestinal disease in preterm infants, NEC can cause inflammation, infection, and lifelong damage. Even with prompt treatment, the mortality rate is often as high as 50%. While there is no single cause of NEC, one thing is clear: infants who drink cow’s milk-based baby formula are significantly more likely to develop the condition.

What is Necrotizing Enterocolitis (NEC)?

NEC is a serious gastrointestinal disease that mostly affects premature infants less than two weeks old. It happens when the intestines become inflamed, causing the death of internal tissue and sometimes creating holes (perforations) in the intestinal wall.

When the baby’s intestines are damaged in this way, they can no longer contain waste. Dangerous bacteria may leak into the abdomen or bloodstream and cause severe illnesses and life-threatening infections.

Many infants with NEC recover completely. But others experience lasting complications. NEC survivors may experience nutritional problems, growth failure, neurological issues, and developmental delays.

Some babies diagnosed with NEC need surgery to remove part of the damaged intestine, which can cause digestive issues in the future. Some will even require a bowel transplant or feeding tube. In other cases, the bowel is scarred or narrowed, which may cause additional intestinal blockages and require further surgeries.

Toxic Baby Formula Lawsuits

As early as 1990, research showed that necrotizing enterocolitis was up to ten times more common in premature infants who drank formula rather than human milk. In the decades since, studies have linked cow’s milk-based formula to a higher risk of NEC in preterm babies. In fact, many neonatal hospitals now prefer donated breast milk over formula to reduce the chance of NEC.

Despite the clear dangers, manufacturers continue to sell cow’s milk-based formula without warning consumers of the risks. As a result, families affected by NEC have filed toxic baby formula lawsuits against the makers of two popular brands: Similac (Abbott Laboratories) and Enfamil (Mead Johnson). These claims suggest that manufacturers knew about the risks of feeding formula to preterm infants, but took no steps to warn parents or medical providers.

Toxic Baby Formula Lawyers

If your premature infant was fed baby formula and later developed NEC, you could be entitled to financial compensation. You may qualify for restitution for expensive medical bills, pain and suffering, future out-of-pocket costs, and even any physical limitations your child may have.

At Altman & Altman LLP, we will work to get justice for you and your family. Our experienced Boston attorneys will consider all options–medical malpractice, personal injury, and products liability–to achieve the best result possible.

By taking legal action, you can help hold baby formula companies accountable for manufacturing a potentially dangerous product. Call us today at 617.492.3000 or contact us online for a free consultation on your NEC claim.

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