Walmart issues urgent recall after two people die from rare bacterial illness found in aromatherapy product

WALMART is recalling an aromatherapy room spray fearing it may be hazardous and contain a rare bacteria.

The “Better Homes & Gardens Lavender & Chamomile Essential Oil Infused Aromatherapy Room Spray with Gemstone” sold at the big box store has been tied to four cases of a rare and dangerous bacteria called “Burkholderia pseudomallei” which causes melioidosis.


FOUR STATES, TWO DEATHS

The potentially fatal condition is commonly found in contaminated water and soil and it's especially hard to diagnose. 

The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) cited the product and confirmed that it is “recalling nearly 4,000 bottles.”

So far this year, cases have been discovered in Georgia, Kansas, Minnesota and Texas. 

Two of the patients, including one child, have died.

RECALL 'IMMEDIATELY'

"CPSC immediately reached out to Walmart to work with the company to get this product out of consumers hands," CPSC spokeswoman Patty Davis said.

"We want to prevent anyone else from being sickened or from dying."

One of the four patients afflicted with the disease had the room spray in their home, NBC News reported.

The product is being tested by federal health officials that may have contaminated three other patients.

The disease is most commonly found in household items. 

It’s predominantly located in tropical climates, especially in Southeast Asia and northern Australia where it is widespread, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The bacteria is spread by humans and animals “through direct contact with the contaminated source.”

MORE TESTING

Federal health officials are now testing products found in the homes of the other three patients.

Burkholderia pseudomallei bacteria are usually never found in household products, at least not in the US.

Such bacteria are most commonly found in contaminated water or soil in farther reaches such as southeast Asia or northern Australia.

On average, about a dozen cases tend to be diagnosed in the U.S. each year, usually among travelers who ventured overseas.

The four American cases that occurred close together in 2021, vexed CDC official because they involved people who hadn't never traveled outside of the country, according to NBC News.

DEADLY AROMATHERAPY

As a precaution, investigators tested water and soil samples from each of the afflicted patients’ homes. 

Those tests revealed the soil and water were clean.

That’s when the investigators started to pay closer attention to imported products inside the homes and identified the bacteria in the aromatherapy spray in the Georgia patient's home on October 6.

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