Infant and mom lying down on a couch

WishGarden Herbs, Inc. recalled one lot of Happy Ducts Compress after it became aware of a possible supply chain contamination.

The Happy Ducts product affected in the recall reportedly contained the Cronobacter sakazakii bacteria.

The same issue of contamination prompted several American health agencies to recall lots of Zantac, a heartburn medication.

Only in this case, a cancer-causing agent called NDMA caused the dangerous impurities in Zantac. 

This later on gave rise to plaintiffs who suffered injuries from taking the medication over the course of several years to file Zantac lawsuits in order to seek justice after being exposed to serious risks of cancer.

However, the contamination in the product discussed in this article is just as bad, as it can pose serious risks for both mothers and their babies. 

Why It Can Hurt Nursing Women And Their Babies

According to the company, the herbal remedy was meant to be used by nursing women as an external compress applied to breast tissue. 

Happy Ducts Compress, when contaminated with Cronobacter sakazakii and applied to breast tissue of nursing mothers, may lead to serious and sometimes life-threatening infections of nursing infants, according to the FDA recall notice.

Infants may be exposed to the bacteria through the residue on their mother’s skin. At the same time, mothers may also be at risk if the contaminated product is applied on broken skin.

How To Spot The Affected Product

46 units of Happy Ducts Compress were impacted in the recall. The affected products’ lot number is 53664 and has an expiration date of August 2022 stamped above the barcode. 

They were packed in 3-ounce containers with the label UPC 6-56490-20223-5, and were sold through select practitioners and online retailers. 

Of the 46 units subject for recall, 36 were already accounted for and WishGarden Herbs had heard of no illnesses or harmful effects related to the use of the recalled product when it pulled the lot from the market. 

In a statement, Catherine Hunziker, WishGarden President, said, “As a leading herbal product company for more than 40 years, we take the safety of our products seriously and we feel it is important to recall this product out of an abundance of caution. Consumer safety is our highest priority.”

How Bad Is Cronobacter Infection?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Cronobacter bacteria are considered rare yet possibly fatal as it can cause various kinds of illnesses depending on the site of the infection and the patient’s age. 

For instance, in children below 12 months, a Cronobacter infection may result in sepsis, seizures, and severe meningitis. 

“Those with meningitis may develop brain abscesses or infarcts, hydrocephalus, or other serious complications that can cause long-term neurological problems,” the CDC stated, explaining that the infection can be fatal for infants.

“The mortality rate for Cronobacter meningitis may be as high as 40%.”

Likewise, Cronobacter can also cause serious medical problems or illnesses in the elderly and immunocompromised patients. 

Formerly known as Enterobacter sakazakii, Cronobacter has been found in different sources. But recent cases have mostly been linked to powdered infant formula. Still, the natural habitat of Cronobacter remains unknown. 

What You Can Do

If you have the recalled lot of Happy Ducts Compress, WishGarden Herbs suggests you don’t open the product or stop using it immediately.

You can mail it to the company’s corporate headquarters at 321 S. Taylor Ave. Suite 100 Louisville, CO 80027 for a refund. 

To report adverse reactions and other quality problems from using recalled products, you can direct them to the FDA’s MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program. 

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