Similac Salmonella Poisoning Lawsuit Filed Over Infant Son’s Illness from Contaminated Formula

Reports of Similac salmonella poisoning led to a massive recall earlier this year, leading to lawsuits against Abbott for distributing contaminated infant formula

A Florida mother has filed a food poisoning lawsuit over salmonella contaminated Similac formula, claiming that Abbott Laboratories knowingly sold tainted products to the public, which caused to her infant son to be hospitalized with severe illness.

The complaint (PDF) was brought on August 22 by Jordyn O’Brien on behalf of herself and her infant son, identified only as H.O. in the lawsuit, in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida.

According to allegations raised in the Similac salmonella poisoning lawsuit, the child consumed contaminated formula that was recalled by Abbott earlier this year, months after first concerns about bacteria were identified.

Abbott recalled cans of Similac, Alimentum and Elecare in February 2022, indicating that the infant formula may be contaminated with Salmonella Newport and Cronobacter sakazakii bacteria. However, within days of the recall, reports began to surface that the company knew about the infant formula contamination problems at its facility since at least September 2021, when the Minnesota Department of Health began investigating a case involving an infected infant.

Hundreds of families have now come forward to pursue Similac food poisoning lawsuits, indicating that infants developed salmonella and other severe gastrointestinal illnesses after consuming the recalled formula, including at least two infant deaths.

Similac Salmonella Poisoning Lawsuits

Was your child hospitalized due to Salmonella or another infection after being fed contaminated Similac, Alimentum or Elecare formula?

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O’Brien’s lawsuit indicates she bought Similac 360 Total Care infant formula for her son in November 2021, and the baby then fell ill and was diagnosed with salmonella food poisoning. He was hospitalized and required 10 days of treatment, according to the complaint.

“Shortly after starting the tainted formula, Plaintiff’s infant suffered immediate and severe injury as a result of consuming the tainted product,” the lawsuit states. “Plaintiff’s infant child became irritable and displayed problems sleeping after consuming the tainted product necessitating medical intervention.”

Salmonella food poisoning can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children and elderly people, or those with weakened immune systems. Symptoms of Salmonella infection include fever, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain.

In some cases, the bacteria can travel into the bloodstream and lead to more severe illness such as aneurysm, endocarditis, and arthritis. Generally healthy people recover from Salmonella infection in about seven to 10 days.

Similac NEC Litigation

The case joins a growing number of similar claims over contaminated Similac, alleging that Abbott’s Sturgis, Michigan manufacturing facility ignored industry safety standards and best practices, endangering infants for the sake of profit. However, the manufacturer already faces hundreds of Similac NEC lawsuits, involving premature infants who developed a devastating gastrointestinal illness caused by the cow’s milk-based infant formula products.

Necrotizing enterocolitis (NEC) is a devastating condition that primarily impacts premature babies, occurring when the walls of the intestines are invaded by bacteria, resulting in destruction of the bowel and often resulting in the need for emergency surgery while the infant is still in the hospital.

These baby formula NEC lawsuits allege Abbott placed its desire for profits before the health and safety of newborn babies, by failing to warn about the risks associated with using their formula among premature and low birth weight infants. Similar allegations have also been presented in Enfamil lawsuits filed against Mead Johnson, which sells similar cow’s milk-based infant formula products also linked to cases of NEC. However, Enfamil has not been linked to the same problems with Salmonella contamination that have plagued Similac.

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