Infant botulism due to consumption of contaminated commercially prepared honey. First report from the Arabian Gulf States

Med Princ Pract. 2006;15(6):456-8. doi: 10.1159/000095494.


Objective: To report the first case of infant botulism in Arabian Gulf States.

Clinical presentation and intervention: A 6-week-old infant, presenting with signs of sepsis, was intubated and ventilated due to progressive weakness. Infant botulism was suspected with acute flaccid paralysis and a history of honey consumption. An electromyogram showed decreased amplitude of compound muscle action potential in all motor nerves, preserved sensory responses; the motor terminal latencies and motor conduction velocities were normal. Blood, stool and honey samples were sent for culture. Stool and honey cultures showed two identical strains of Clostridium botulinum.

Conclusion: This case shows that the infant botulism occurred from the ingested contaminated honey. Hence vigilance should be maintained when a baby is fed honey and shows signs of progressive weakness because the disease can quickly progress to respiratory failure.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Botulism / etiology
  • Botulism / microbiology*
  • Clostridium botulinum*
  • Electromyography
  • Honey / microbiology*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male