13 answers

2 Month Pre-Mature Baby with Severe Acid Reflux

I am the mommy to 2 kids My Youngest is my son who is now 2 1/2 months old he was born at 32 weeks. He has been diagnosed with Severe Acid Reflux and Lactose and Tollerance. He is On Four Different Medications and Neo-Cate Formula. But he is always Uncomfortable, crying and cant get comfortable. I am running out of Ideas to try to make him feel better but nothing seems to be working.. I dont want him to have to have surgery on his tummy so if there are any suggestions on what I can do to make him feel better I am up to Try Everything!! He has also just had surgery for a double Hernia Repair anything I should be aware of there??

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

Have they ruled out piloric stenosis? You may want to google it... Sorry I don't have any suggestions, just wanted to make you aware of PS in case the docs haven't considered it.

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Yes, I feel for you! I had my son 5 weeks early and he was only 4 lbs, tiny thing. He had acid reflux and was so fussy unless he was held. This went on for a couple of months, but it did improve! He is now 5 months old and still takes the acid reflux medicine, but he is not as fussy now. There was a time that I thought it was never going to end. Ask friends, family, neighbors, people from church, etc. to come over and help you hold him or whatever. I know it can be quite stressful.

I'm so sorry. We're also facing a Nissen Fundoplication some day. When our son was little, he was horribly colicky. He cried almost non-stop except for 20 minute power naps. We watched the video, "The Happiest Baby on the Block" by Dr. Harvey Karp. Ten minutes into the video, he was happily asleep and slept for 4 hours. That became his norm. We actually didn't have him diagnosed with reflux until much later because he became such a happy baby. I'd be curious what meds you use? We're struggling and desperately trying to avoid surgery, at least for now. We're told we'll eventually have it, but I still keep hoping someday he'll outgrow the reflux. Congratulations on your little guy. This must be a very difficult time for you. Let me know if I can help in anyway.

Hi C.,

I don't know if this is the case....But kids with reflux have worse reflux when they have anxiety....(both my kids had it, one still does)....That being said I know when my husband was deployed my mood is slightly different. I also know when my babies are young my anxiety level (due to the constant crying) is much higher. Babies pick up on your anxiety or calmness very quickly....this is very unfortunant if the baby is crying constantly--great if they are calm and happy.

My suggestion is contact family services, your family, your friends, and everyone you know and ask for help! Let them know that you need someone to come in and hold you your baby for a couple hours a day. You need the break, if you get it you will be more relaxed and so will your baby. I don't think most people realize that a baby with reflux is like 24/7 colic so you may need to make them realize this.

Also check out the Tucker sling (for sleeping) and the Moby Wrap (so you can have your hands free).

Here is a website:

I used the crib sling, but with your baby being so young and so severe the wedge would be more useful because you could take around the house and throw it in the car if need be.

this web site has all kinds of info.


Remember if he is still uncomfortable from the surgery he will be having more reflux. Plus make sure he isn't constipated. Try a warm bottle thing (can't think of the name) just not too warm and set it on his tummy occasionally.

I journaled with my babies and that really helped me find a pattern. Also have you tried Dr. Brown Bottles?

I don't know what Neo-Cate formula is (I am assuming it is the prescription kind). Nutramigen worked well for my kids but they were not premature. I would think in a few weeks to a couple months his stomach will mature more, and he may still have reflux but it will get better.

Recap: I think the most imp thing you can do is get some help.

Email me and I'll send you my number.


Hi C. - I'm sure this has been suggested to you already, but just in case it hasn't, I thought I'd mention it: my son has acid reflux (but wasn't premature) and we bought a Tucker Sling ... they're expensive, but so worth it! He slept great in it and we noticed he was sleeping much longer once we started him in it. Good luck to you!

First of all, Thank you to you and your family for the service you are providing to our country. I'm not sure if my advice will help your situation or not but I would swaddle him. wrap him up like a taco in his blanket. The tighter the better. This will help him feel secure as he did in the womb. You may also try lightly massaging his belly when you change him. If you haven't already, call your doctor or schedule an appointment to make sure he is healing from the hernia surgery. Remember it's ok to ask for help. If you have a fussy little one, you need to take a little time for yourself so you can better care for him and your little girl. I hope I helped, even a little bit.
Thank you again for the sacrifices your family has made for our country and continued freedom.
Best of luck, Chalon

Hi C., congrats on your family and a big thank you to your husband for fighting for our freedom.
On to to your little one.. My last girl had this problem and I hated seeing her miserable. First - Are you nursing at all? It doesn't soudn like it but if you are, drop all your dairy and sugar products. If you want more info on this, let me know. Second - try and keep baby in an elevated position at all times. Even while sleeping. Third - Try to burp baby every ounce or so while feeding and gradually make the intervals longer once you start seeing improvement. I
I hope I gave you some ideas (that are new) to try right away and without spending any money. Good luck to you.

Have they ruled out piloric stenosis? You may want to google it... Sorry I don't have any suggestions, just wanted to make you aware of PS in case the docs haven't considered it.

having a preemie is complicated enough without all the medical stuff. I have a 24 weeker, but she's 14 now. In CO, we have a listserv just for parents of kids with special needs, such as preemies, and lots of those kids have reflux, and have had similar surgeries. You can sign up for that listserv at www.p2p-co.org and talk to lots of parents with similar stories who can help you out.

there is also an international preemie yahoo group called preemie-l . it is a wonderful group for parents of new preemies. You will find lots of support there as well. go to Yahoo Groups and search for Preemie-L .

take care, S.

My daughter just had the Nissan. Her GERD is gone. I've heard of babies under 1 year old growing out of reflux....Lol..I read that wrong - I thought you said your son was 2.5 YEARS old...hehe.

Ok, so I've heard people have success trying a different formula. replace one bottle with the new stuff per day. Also, let your baby sleep in a cradle swing (like the fisher price rainforest swing). You can also put rolled towels under his crib mattress to elevate his head slightly.

I was worried about the surgery until I talked to my daughter's physical therapist. Her husband battled with reflux every day of his whole life. Finally, as an adult, he had the Nissan. He said it was like an off switch. The day before the surgery was the last time he had reflux. He hasn't had it since....ever.

They can do it laproscopically so the heal time after surgery is short. The surgeons up at Primary Children's are very good at it. Most insurances cover it - the referral needs to come from your pediatrician. My daughter's cardiologist recommended Dr. Barnhart for his skills at laproscopic surgery. PCMC Surgery Dept ###-###-####

Try some stuff called Baby Bliss. My son was on several scripts for the same thing the first year of his life. After about 6 months of watching my son in pain, I was so depressed and felt so helpless I never thought we would make it through and watching your baby like that is just heart-wrenching. Once we discovered the Baby Bliss it was so much better. We always ordered it online but I think you can get it at Walgreens now.

Good luck!

Hi C.,

I am so sorry that you are going through this. It sounds like your little guy is going through a horrible time. I am not sure if someone already suggested this but thought I would give my input. My son, now almost 1 year, was diagnosed with Acid Reflux (GERD) at about 6 weeks. I started to document how many times he spit up in one day.. about 20+. He was never without a bib, burp cloth and change of clothes. The thing that worked best for us was having him sleep in his car seat for naps & night time. We tried putting a rolled towel under his crib mattress but he only slid down. The car seat worked great! He slept in it until we started him on solids which is when the Reflux started to disappear. He also was taking liquid Zantac for all those months. I feel your pain. I would ask your doc if you could start him on solids early - like maybe at 4 months and see if they think that would help.
Hope something works out for you.
Take care,

I wish I could ease your mind about the acid reflux, but all I can tell you is that my son finally grew out of his at 9 months (adjusted age). Mainly, I'm telling you that his hernias should be fine now. My son had bilateral inguinal hernias, and after the doctor fixed them, he didn't have any problems afterwards. I hope this gives you some comfort.

Read the book How Doctors Think by Jerome Groopman. It will help you with this situation.

Get a second opinion. And a third or fourth or even more, until you find answers and the right doctor or doctors to help.

I can't offer any specific advice but I do wish you and your family the best.

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