Wednesday, 23 January 2019 22:16

Baby allegedly overdoses on meth-tainted breast milk Featured

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BANGOR - A Bangor mother is facing multiple charges after her 7-month-old allegedly ingested methamphetamine.

 While police can't give an update on the infant's condition, they believe the child was exposed to the drug through breastfeeding. Police could not comment on whether the child would be moved to a different home.


Police responded on December 16th, after they got reports the child was taken to Northern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center, and was unconscious and had ingested methamphetamine.


Sgt. Wade Betters of the Bangor Police Dept. said the child was taken to the emergency room due to an overdose. He also said the mother, Alyssa Murch, 20, is facing charges.


"After the investigation completed, we did charge Alyssa Murch with a felony count of furnishing drugs and one count of endangering the welfare of a child," said Sgt. Betters.


According to the Bangor police press release, the investigation concluded Monday.


And Sgt. Betters said that investigation gave them a likely cause.


"At seven months old, there's not a lot of ways that can happen, and the investigation ultimately revealed it was delivered through breast milk," he said.


Over at Northern Light, Dr. Jonathan Wood said it's possible a young child could get exposed to drugs through breast milk, but he said it's more common to see kids become acutely affected by directly eating said drug. Dr. Wood did not tend to this particular patient.


"When you see someone acutely affected, with acute changes in their mental status...overwhelmingly it's going to be more likely that they got into something," said Dr. Wood, a pediatric ICU doctor and Northern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center's senior lead physician for pediatrics.


According to Dr. Wood, it's unlikely there would be long term effects from an infant being exposed to these kinds of drugs - unless there was damage caused by a symptom, like breathing problems or a lack of oxygen to the brain.


There's no antidote for a child with a toxic overdose, so doctors treat them with supportive care and then try to help create a safer environment at home.


Dr. Wood said they work "to support them until their body takes care of it, and make sure that they get plenty of oxygen."


Murch is expected to make her initial court appearance on Feb. 20 at the Penobscot Judicial Center.


Kelly Mitchell

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Kelly Mitchell joined the news team in March of 2018. She grew up splitting her time between York, ME and Haverhill, MA, but her favorite childhood memories took place along the rocky coast of southern Maine. She's now e...