Parents Fight for Change After Losing Their Baby to NEC

Parents Fight for Change After Losing Their Baby to NEC

Infant formula products have been linked with deaths and severe ailments in infants. Premature babies who are fed specific Enfamil and Similac formulas can develop NEC (necrotizing enterocolitis). Many parents have filed legal complaints against leading baby formula manufacturers like Abbott and Mead Johnson for failing to warn consumers about the adverse effects of their products.

NEC is a chronic ailment and has a survival rate of close to 44%. Several lawsuits filed by parents across the globe stated that Mead Johnson and Abbott kept on marketing and selling their products despite them being unsafe for infants.

In this article, we will delve into the dangers of NEC and how a family dealt with the loss of their child due to this ailment and is now committed to bringing about a change. We will also share how parents can file a lawsuit to get covered for the suffering and damages they have endured.

The Dangers of NEC in Infants

NEC usually impacts newborns, and it affects one in every 1,000 live births. Even though it can affect full-term infants, close to 70% of preterm infants who are born 36 weeks before gestation suffer from it. Furthermore, the disease is highly common in infants with low birth weight.

The disease affects infants when bacteria invade their intestinal walls, leading to inflammation and infection. As NEC progresses, the inflammation creates a shortage of blood supply in tissues, which, in turn, results in necrosis or perforations in the intestines and can even lead to death.

The tell-tell signs of NEC include:

  • Problems in digesting food
  • Abdominal tenderness to palpation
  • A bloated stomach
  • Diarrhea
  • Presence of blood in the stool
  • Acute lethargy
  • Puking yellowish-green liquid
  • Temporary halt in breathing

Parents must keep a tab on these symptoms and get their babies medically checked and treated. If the medical tests affirm that their baby has NEC and it is due to the use of baby formula, they can file an NEC lawsuit to sue the concerned manufacturer and get compensated for their loss and suffering.

Sophie’s Story of Losing Her Firstborn to NEC

Little did Sophie Streeter know that her son would lose his life because of NEC. In October 2023, ABC News reported that when Charlie’s birth weight increased in the NICU (neonatal intensive care unit) at Gold Coast Hospital, his parents were optimistic.

Sophie shared that they could see that his lungs were gradually developing well. As soon as Charlie was eight weeks old, he was diagnosed with NEC. Infants who end up living despite this disease usually have long-term impacts on their brains.

In a few days, Charlie fell extremely sick and had to undergo two rounds of emergency surgery, which ultimately couldn’t save him. He breathed his last in his mother’s arms, who said that this predicament was unbelievable.

Sophie is one of several mothers who have lost their son to NEC. If you or anyone you know has suffered from the same problem, it is best to seek legal recourse after getting a medical diagnosis.

TorHoerman Law states that if your baby has suffered from NEC after being fed with bovine-based formula, you qualify for an NEC lawsuit. When you work with a lawyer, you should share every piece of evidence with them so that they can study and use it to build a solid case to present at court. The proof can include photos, witness statements, medical records, medical bills, and incident reports.

Furthermore, your lawyer will also share details on settlement payouts for your legal case. Typically, the settlement amounts vary between $5,000 and $500,000 and more.

Parents Committed to Bring About a Change

As the lawsuits against baby formula manufacturers are going up, it is necessary to solve NEC. Charlie’s parents have joined hands with the Hudson Institute of Medical Research, Melbourne, to raise funds for research and awareness about NEC.

This research is led by Marcel and Claudia Nold, a husband-wife professor duo. They are conducting clinical trials to manage severe inflammation caused by NEC in babies. The research aims to block a specific cytokine, named interleukin 1, which leads to devastating inflammation.

A drug that gets used to treat rheumatoid arthritis in adults has shown positive outcomes in entry-level safety trials. It is expected that there might be a treatment available for NEC in five years or even earlier if the trials go well.


When parents lose their infant to NEC because of the ingestion of baby formula, it is a heartbreaking experience. It is painful to trust baby formula manufacturers only to witness the loss of their infant. Therefore, it is necessary to keep a watch on the NEC symptoms and establish if they are due to the use of Enfamil or Similac products through proper medical tests.

After that, it is necessary to seek both medical and legal aid. Other than providing the parents with the compensation they deserve, it will help raise awareness about baby formula dangers and warn other parents about using the same.