Six-week-old Lincoln James was paralyzed after ingesting botulin-contaminated milk. He was immediately rushed to the hospital, and doctors diagnosed him with infant botulism. His unfortunate situation is a grim reminder for parents to always check the quality of the products they have at home.
Botulism is an illness caused by the toxin produced by the bacteria, Clostridium botulinum. Once ingested, the substance causes paralysis in the face and limbs. Eventually, it can cause respiratory failure when it begins to affect the breathing muscles. Usually, the bacteria are found in soil and untreated water. Some spores can survive in poorly preserved food and some canned goods. Infant botulism, which is what Lincoln had, is usually caused by eating honey or corn syrup. Sometimes, it can occur naturally in the stool of the baby.
Earlier this month, Amanda Schafer rushed her baby to the hospital because she was seeing his condition quickly deteriorate. Lincoln wasn’t moving his arms much anymore, and his head was quite wobbly. He began having issues eating, and he was gagging every time he tried to nurse. At the hospital, they diagnosed him with infant botulism.
Schafer was quite concerned because the only things that Lincoln has been consuming was breast milk and infant formula. She knew that the bacteria grew in honey, and her baby has not consumed any at all. However, the doctors warned that it could be the infant formula he’s been fed. Alternatively, he could have just been in contact with the bacteria through his own body.
Thankfully, they got to the hospital in time. Schafer is excited and relieved to have her baby back to good health. The hospital imported drugs from California to ensure the baby boy has a full recovery. She has experienced one of the scariest things as a mom: seeing your baby lifeless and limp.
While the specific source of Lincoln’s botulism is yet to be determined, doctors wish to warn parents of potentially contaminated foods. Generally, infants shouldn’t be fed honey because trace amounts of bacteria can be found in it. Any preserved foods like those found in a can are also risky. If your baby is showing signs of being limp, contact your doctor immediately.