Posted By Posting
Jan 05, 2014
reflux baby, desperate mom from Greece
Hi all, and Happy New Year. New member here, but already seven and a half months into reflux hell. My 7 1/2 month old baby boy suffers from silent reflux. Ph test at 2 1/2 months of age showed 27% acidic fluids. Gastroscopy showed mild esophagitis but very few eosinophil cells (not probable allergy to cow's milk). Barium shallow showed no defect. Patch and prick tests showed no allergy to cow's milk. (not breastfeeding) Have to note that baby needs to be held up to 1 hour and a half (in the past up to 3 hours) after every feed and can't put him down or in bed unless his stomach has emptied or the contents of it return to the esophagus. Can you imagine the sleepless nights! Baby's stomach is very sensitive to solids. He can only eat boiled apple and pear, carrots, pasta, oil and rabbit meat. He's allergic to egg, oatmeal, rice and lamb, and sensitive to calf, corn, potatoes... all these have caused enormous reflux flare up and sleepless nights, so I'm very reluctant to try new foods. Baby's currently on 12 ml Nexium and 1 ml Domperidone for the night. Nights are hell for us as, although he sleeps ok for a couple of hrs during the day and reflux is no big deal, during the night he refluxes almost every half an hr, which wakes him up terrified and crying. As a result I have a nervous baby during the day (due to lack of sleep) and a crying baby who can't sleep at night. I'm exhausted and very sad for him. Since all the symptoms get bigger at night and since all allergies show their presence by night refluxing, the allergist doctor has recommended colonoscopy but took this back since I told her that gastroscopy showed no eosinophils. Last but not least, he is teething and hell has opened its gates and all the demons have broken into my home. Thank God he develops ok as he's a comfort eater (70 cm and 8 kilos today). Please help me. Any idea why reflux mainly at night?
Jan 08, 2014
Lorenzo b.4/25/07 1 week in NICU w/ aspirate pneumonia from a reflux episode; diagnosed GERD at 9weeks; Used Zantac for 5months. Currently using Chinese Medicine and Craniosacral Therapy. GERD, Obstructive Sleep Apnea, Sensory Processing Disorder. Ask me about breastfeeding a refluxer! Pic: day 5 in the NICU.
Ah, yes, I CAN imagine the sleepless nights, as I went over 3 years with a sleepless soul. And teething pretty much always makes life harder for refluxers.

It sounds like, for a 7 1/2 month old, he's actually eating quite a bit by way of solids, so that sounds like good news -- though I understand the fear of introducing new things. My son didn't tolerate solids until he was 2, mostly due to swallowing and sensory issues, rather than allergy/sensitivities, but introducing anything was always worrisome nonetheless. How is his weight/growth and development?

As for sleep, there are several things that can cause real troubles for refluxers trying to sleep. One is simply the fact of acid coming up into the esophagus, which is hard to sleep through for many. There is a lot of individual variation in physical sensitivity among people, so some babies are extremely sensitive to the sensation, even if it isn't acidic, and some are less sensitive to it. At night, there is likely a larger quantity of content in the stomach, so that could be a part of why nights are worse than days. If you haven't already experimented with (and kept a journal so you remember the results) feeding the most easily digested foods towards the end of the day, I would surely start there. Where does he sleep, and in what position?

For reasons I still don't understand, few people ever mention the link between Obstructive Sleep Apnea and reflux, which exists, and which can wreak havoc on sleep, and, in the long term, can lead to additional problems. The presence of sleep apnea is confirmed via a plysomnograph, or sleep study, and, when done in conjunction with a pH probe can show any direct link between reflux episodes and apnea episodes. If you'd like more information about sleep apnea, you can check out the pediatric forum at the American Sleep Apnea Association website. I haven't time to go into as much detail as I'd like about understanding infant sleep, and where it can get problematic, at the moment, but perhaps in the near future I will be able to.

In the meantime, you are definitely not alone with the sleeplessness. Most of us here on this forum have been there at some time or another, to some degree or another. Try to take care of yourself as best you can -- do you have some support at home? Hang in there!

Check with your
doctor first!