FDA Warns Consumers about Toxic Belladona in Kids’ Homeopathic Medications
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has confirmed that it has found varying and elevated levels of belladonna, a plant that contains potentially deadly toxins in teething tablets sold under the company Hyland’s brand as well as other brands. According to a news report in Consumerist.com, the teething tablets and other children’s products containing large amounts of belladonna have resulted in the deaths of young children. The FDA last week issued another warning to say that the belladonna levels in the products made by companies such as Hyland and Raritan are dangerous and can be deadly for children.
Deadly Effects of Belladonna
Belladonna, also known as nightshade, is a perennial herbaceous plant native to Europe, North Africa and Western Asia. The foliage and berries of this plant are extremely poisonous containing tropane alkaloids. It could cause bizarre delirium and hallucinations among other side effects. Belladonna also apparently has other unpredictable effects.
FDA officials say the body’s response to belladonna in children under the age of 2 is unpredictable and puts them at unnecessary risk. The FDA is recommending that parents and caregivers stay away from giving these teething tablets to children and seek advice from their pediatricians for safer and better alternatives. The safety agency has compiled numerous incidents of children suffering adverse reactions from red, bumpy rashes to seizures. Parents have pointed out in these reports that they had no idea Hyland’s products had been recalled in 2010 over potentially dangerous levels of belladonna.
No Benefit to Using Products
But, the FDA has noted in its latest announcement that Hyland has so far refused to issue a recall related to these most recent concerns. In October, the company made an announcement that it will stop selling these teething products in the U.S., but many stores may still have them in stock or parents or caregivers may still have them lying around at home. That’s why the FDA has issued a strong warning to consumers urging them not to use these products.
CVS in September pulled all homeopathic teething products from store shelves after reports of child deaths due to the increased belladonna. Another company, Raritan Pharmaceuticals, issued a recall on teething products as well. Several consumer safety groups have already warned parents that these products have no significant benefits, but pose serious risks to young children. Consumer Union has urged retailers, pharmacy chains and online Web merchants to stop selling these products right away.
It is crucial that the companies that are making these products issue a large-scale recall immediately so parents and caregivers become aware of this serious problem and more children don’t succumb to deadly side effects. Product manufacturers have a legal obligation to make sure that the products they make are safe for consumers. When they know the dangers, they are required to take every possible step to make sure consumers are warned and that the products are pulled off the market. If your child has been affected by these dangerous and defective products, please contact an experienced product defect attorney to obtain more information about your legal rights.