Posted By Posting
Jul 22, 2009
Baby with reflux, nothing is working. So frustrated.
Hi, I'm mom to Alexandra, 6 months (4 months adjusted), who was born at 30 weeks and has had silent reflux (arching back, turning red, crying/screaming through feeds starting about halfway through the bottle) since around her due date. We've tried Pepcid, which only seems to help for about 6 hours instead of the 12 it's supposed to last. Prevacid makes her vomit (LOTS) about once a day. Zantac worked great for about 5 weeks, and then we had to increase the dose because it was losing its effectiveness, and the increased dose makes her full-on vomit about once a day as well, usually in the evening. She had mostly breastmilk her first three months, but had terrible gas (it was so bad it would wake her up -- she never slept more than 45 minutes at a time) from the breastmilk no matter what I did with my diet. She was also on EnfaCare 22 calorie formula as a supplement, and then we started using it full-time. The terrible gas continued. We switched to Nutramigen, and she was constantly hungry, uncomfortable, and upset. Now we're on Alimentum, which seems to be better, and daily probiotics have helped her gas problem (she was on massive antibiotic doses when she was born because I had PROM, so that could have messed up her intestines). But I'm still really tired of seeing her formula come back up. And some feeds are still a struggle. We just started thickening her formula with 2 tsp of rice cereal per 4 ounces of formula. It seems to help her get through her bottles faster, but that's about it. She still eats no more than 4 ounces every 2 hours during the day. We've been to a pediatric GI doctor, but since Alexandra is gaining weight ok, he pretty much dismissed us. I think he thought I was just crazy. He didn't even look at her food/reaction diary and didn't even notice she'd been 10 weeks premature. He did suggest the Alimentum, but I was really disappointed overall because I'd had such high hopes. We made a follow-up appointment with his partner (who gets rave reviews) but there was a 10-week wait for an appointment, even though we had been told to come back in a month. I'm so frustrated. I just want my little girl to be able to eat without pain and without throwing up so much. I was skimming the message board and a lot of you seemed to have some great (hard-won) advice. If anyone has any ideas about what might help, I would be so grateful. Many thanks, Megan
Jul 22, 2009
Julie - I have three children. My youngest Katie is my refluxer. My first Ben was very colicy and is ADHD. My middle Jakob is pretty easy going. Katie had it bad as a baby no sleep for two years. She was on Nutramagin, Prevacid and Zantac. Thought we were through it but after age three it came back big time. After her scope she was put on Prevacid 45mg a day and mylanta as needed. Scope was in Sept. Showed damage in stomach and espophogus. It took about 7 months of medication and Reflux diet for her to start feeling better.
Since she reacted badly to the prevacid, maybe try a different PPI. Maybe ask the dr. to prescribe a new one so that you have some experience with it for the new appt. (prilosec, nexium, zegrid ect.)

The rice in the cereal could be causing more problems for her tummy. I would stop that and maybe try oatmeal or simply thick.

You could try mylanta to ease the pain.

Are you sure that her bowel movements are regular? constipation can cause pain.

hang in there

Jul 22, 2009
adelines mom
i would stay away from the rice cereal! we thicken with simply thick. we used the alimentum for a long time. really bad gas and lots of throwing up. we changed to nestle's good start (in purple can) and it made a big difference. the throw ups became a little less and way less smelly! still lots of gas. we used mylicon drops (without the dye) all the time. call back and get on their waiting list and keep calling to see the other doctor! don't take no for an answer!!!!!!!
Jul 22, 2009
This is our dd, Alessandra. Dx with GER 10/07. Ran the gamut with meds and now done with them (crossed fingers). Using magnesium, probiotics and prebiotic supplements. With the exception of teething and general sassy attitude, all is well now. They really CAN grow out of it!
I would ask whichever MD Rx'd the meds if you could do both a PPI and an H2 - we used Prevacid and Pepcid. BTW, there are a few forms of prevacid (liquid compound, solutabs, and capsules). Whereas there's only the compounded Prilosec and the Nexium capsules. Though the tabs seems to work the best, the Prevacid capsules have NO milk traces in it (another mom whose kiddo has MULTIPLE allergies used these.) Also the timing of the meds - the PPI's generally need to be given on empty. EMPTY. Minimum of an hour after last feed and at LEAST 15 min (preferably 30) before next one. They don't work otherwise. The capsules that have to be broken can be given with a samll amount of applesauce or 1/2 oz of formula I believe.

My dd was a total chunker even with the projectile vomit, though we were lucky not to be dismissed. So even if there's no FTT, it doesn't mean the reflux isn't there. Often times though, the vomit is just there. Period. It's mainly a laundry problem if there's no FTT. My dd's vomiting slowed down once she started walking and stopped just about 12 months. The reflux wasn't over though - we didn't have a successful med wean until 19 months (she's 22 months now).

I agree with skipping the rice - it may be less allergenic, but it's tough on these sensitive tummies. If calories or fiber are not issues, I'd go with a simple thickener like ThickIt or Simply Thick. We used oatmeal cereal due to constipation issues and used a LOT of it (3 tsp/oz) under MD instruction. The probiotics are awesome, but make sure you get one with as many live strains as possible - we use one with 10 strains, though I've seen as many as 14. The best ones need refridgeration to stay viable.

Maalox or Mylanta as needed can aslo help a lot for breakthrough pain and gas. They usually have simethicone in them to help with gas and bloating. Note on these - if your girl tends to have loose stools, use one containing bismuth. If the stools tend to be firm or she leans toward constipaiton, use one with magnesium/aluminum. Ask your MD or pharmacist for dosage.

The crazy feeding schedule....I recall it well. We did the same one you did for about 9 months because of the vomit. It may sound counterintuitive, but maybe try 3 oz every 1.5 to 2 hours. And bottle/nipple combo is always fun. We went through about 4 kinds before my dd finally did better with the Playtex Drop Ins with the latex NaturalLatch. It helped with the gas since the latex is easier to latch to than silicone and you can get all the air out before she eats. Had to surgically enhance the nipples ;-) to get the thickened formula through but once we found what worked, it was finally no more of a huge struggle.

I've got to run, but you'll get great advice here. HUGS - we've been there and still clearly all remember!

Jul 24, 2009
Thanks everyone. She has BMs every one or two days, and they aren't hard or anything, so I *think* they are ok, but there's a lot I still don't know. We'll stop the rice cereal and maybe try some Simply Thick. I actually have their starter kit but got it right before a miraculous one-month period when she was doing fine, so we didn't use it. :) We'll try giving her less food at a time, too. I appreciate everyone's tips! Megan
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