Get answers to your child's growth, nutrition, and feeding behavior questions.
Infant botulism is a potentially life-threatening disease in which the bacteria Clostridium botulinum grows within the baby's gastrointestinal tract.
Clostridium botulinum is a spore-forming organism that is common in nature. The spores may be found in soil and certain foods (such as honey and some corn syrups).
Infant botulism occurs mostly in young infants between 6 weeks and 6 months of age. It has been reported to occur as early as 6 days and as late as 1 year.
Risk factors include swallowing honey as a baby, being around contaminated soil, and having less than one stool per day for a period greater than 2 months.
Arnon SS. Botulism (Clostridium Botulinum). In: Kliegman RM, Behrman RE, Jenson HB, Stanton BF, eds. Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics. 18th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2007:chap 207.
© 2011 University of Maryland Medical Center (UMMC). All rights reserved.
UMMC is a member of the University of Maryland Medical System,
22 S. Greene Street, Baltimore, MD 21201. TDD: 1-800-735-2258 or 1.866.408.6885