Lucinda noticed that something was wrong with her two-week-old son when he wouldn’t stop crying. The mom also has a two-year-old daughter, so she can recognize the difference between a baby crying from hunger and a baby crying over something more serious. As her newborn, Ezra, kept crying, she got a bad feeling. His skin started to turn red, and he felt hot to the touch. When she took his temperature, she was horrified to see that it was almost 102 degrees.
She immediately rushed Ezra to the hospital, where he received a spinal tap. The spinal tap revealed that he was suffering from listeria meningitis, a dangerous brain infection. Babies sometimes contract listeria meningitis during delivery. The mother can acquire the bacteria from some types of food and pass it on to the baby.
Lucinda was shocked to find out that she had acquired the bacteria from eating cold cuts. Many parents don’t know that refrigerated deli meats and cheeses that are served cold can contain the listeria bacteria. This bacteria can survive at refrigerated temperatures, and while it’s completely safe for adults to consume, babies aren’t strong enough to fight off the bacteria. Pregnant women should avoid eating deli meats and cheese because of this bacteria, but Lucinda had no idea.
Doctors told Lucinda that if she had not taken Ezra for treatment, she probably would have lost him. Fortunately, she listened to her instincts that told her something was wrong, and she was able to get Ezra treatment in time. She now wants to share her story with other expecting mothers to prevent other parents from going through the same experience.