S.L. asks from Oceanside, CA on May 08, 2010
Blood in Stool?? Help!!
My daughter is almost four months old. At her two month appointment she had the rotovirus vaccine. On that day she started to have diarreaha and it has continued since. After a couple of weeks they tested her stool and found blood, and they said "milk protein allergy." I tried to eliminate all dairy and soy and they gave me neutramigin as a suppliment. It didn't stop, so we had her allergy tested. The blood tests came back ALL negative. The blood and diarreaha have continued so we went to a GI and she said to stop breastfeeding and use neutramigin. I did it slowly because my daughter does not really like the formula, and it seems like she is having more diapers and is fussy. I do have to add, she has never been fussy until now nor does she have any other symptoms like rashes or cries in pain. Has anyone had this happen? I am so torn. Do I listen to the Dr. and only use formula or go with only breastfeeding which is what I want to do. Am I putting my daugther in danger? Has anyone stopped breastfeeding and that didn't help their situation. I don't think the formula is going to solve the problem. Help Please!!!
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So What Happened?™
I want to start by thanking all the moms who responded to my questions. I had been searching on the internet daily to find some answers, or comfort, and came away feeling more frustrated. After typing in my questions on Mamapedia, people responded that night. I finally starting to feel better as well as my sweet Delilah. I decided to go to straight breastmilk and am on a allergen free diet. It seem to be helping, but it has only been 3 full days at this point. I have to really look to see any blood and if I do it is usually a tiny dot if any. I know I need to continue to eliminate all blood, so I will. The diet hasn't been that bad. I spoke to a friend who has been so helpful and has me set up on the right things to eat. I really think my baby girl and I are on our way thanks to all of you.
S.B. answers from Savannah on May 09, 2010
I would get a second opinion as well. I don't understand why you would have to stop breastfeeding and switch to formula if all her allergy tests came back negative.
S.C. answers from Fort Wayne on May 09, 2010
Just because she might have a sensitivity to milk doesn't mean that you can't breastfeed. You'll need to cut all dairy out of YOUR diet so that she doesn't get any though. But, if the tests came back negative, I'm not so sure that she has an allergy. Did they do any type of GI test on her?
I think I would get a second opinion. It doesn't sound like they are being very thorough. Seems like they already have a diagnosis in their heads and are refusing to look at anything else. If you can afford it, I think I'd take her to the
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K.D. answers from Dallas on May 09, 2010
In this case, I would get a second opinion. Are your nipples cracking and bleeding at all when you breastfeed? If they are, that is where the blood is coming from. If not, maybe it IS milk protein allergy, in which case all you need to do is eliminate milk from your diet while nursing. Have you done this already and theres still a problem? Hm. Get a second opinion.
Keep trying with the formula in the mean time and pump your milk so you don't dry up just yet. I know that nutramigen tastes bitter and breastmilk tastes sweet, so no surprise there why she is having trouble taking it. She will come around though, my daughter did, we had to supplement with that formula for her. Let us know what happens, and good luck!
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A.N. answers from Las Vegas on May 10, 2010
I would definitely get a second opinion, see if you can find a more breastfeeding friendly doctor. They will work with you and see what they can do to keep you breastfeeding. I think you should try cutting everything out of your diet (I know there is information online about this), you can only eat a few things that are known to be safe, but if you eat that for a few days (or more?), you should be able to tell if the breastmilk is affecting her. She would stop having the symptoms you describe. Then you just slowly introduce things back into your diet, and watch her for problems.
Also, if the diarrhea hasn't stopped since the vaccine, why didn't the doctor look into that as a cause? That vaccine has previously known to cause problems (I know it has been changed, but it still hasn't been around that long, so something could be wrong with it), she could have some continuing problems from that.
L.W. answers from Los Angeles on May 10, 2010
Since the test came back negative for milk protein, have you considered cutting gluten out of your diet. I think it is in formula as well. It might be worth a shot. Alot of people are gluten sensitive and it can do alot of damage.
P.S. answers from Los Angeles on May 10, 2010
sorry to hear about what's going on...i know first hand what you are feeling as I went through the same thing with my son. His blood in stool started when he was 3mo's old and I did everything including elimination of all typical allergens from my diet as he was an exclusively breastfed baby, that did not work. I took him to a GI specialist who did a "baby" Colonoscopy to rule out something more serious than allergies, thankfully it was concluded that it was allergies to unknown substance, it was recommended that I stop breastfeeding and that I start nutramigin as well. Pediatrician encouraged me to switch to formula, GI supported my decision to continue to breastfeed exclusively and monitor blood in stool with regular GI checkups. This is the option I went with as I did not want to stop nursing (never switched or even tried formula). "The blood in stool continued until my son was 14 mos (given clean bill of health at 16 and 18mo and told not to return to GI unless I had concerns) and I continued to nurse until he was 19mos. The amount of blood was microscopic by before my son turned 5mo, so the GI was not concerned and I felt comfortable as my son was gaining weight appropriately and did not appear to have any negative repercussions from continued nursing. So, what I am trying to say is that if you feel comfortable and your daughter is thriving and she is being monitored regularly by the GI or pediatrician(as long as pediatrician can test for blood in stool) then I would continue to nurse and consider eliminating formula, unless it is needed to supplement your production. I hope this is helpful and if you want a second opinion from a GI, I would highly recommend Dr. Bahar ###-###-####), the only negative thing is that he does not accept any insurance, he will bill your insurance, but you pay upfront at each visit and insurance reimburses you if you qualify. Hope this is helpful and good luck, I know how scary it can be, but trust your gut.
C.L. answers from Los Angeles on May 10, 2010
This may or may not be very helpful- my daughter also had blood in her stool as an infant and we ran a ton of tests; I also went off dairy- nothing worked and the allergy tests were all negative. However, I continued breastfeeding the whole time, and eventually the blood just disappeared and a couple of months. It was very strange. So perhaps in my case it was a temporary reaction to something I didn't remember, or something else, which I know is not that helpful, but I just wanted you to know that sometimes it goes away on its own. Perhaps it would be helpful to keep breastfeeding and then monitor the symptoms to see if they are getting worse. Maybe they can do a test for allergies to soy or wheat, which are common as well, or you can try eliminating those from your diet for a while. Breastfeeding is so important for so many things that try to keep doing that if at all possible. My daughter is 2 1/2 now and totally healthy, hardly ever gets sick and no allergies that we know of. Best wishes.
M.P. answers from Portland on May 09, 2010
When you say that they all came out negative, do you mean that her blood tests did not show that she has an allergy? If so, I suggest that breast feeding could possibly be the way to go. If she has allergies then you would have to not eat the things to which she is allergic.
I have two suggestions. The first is to see a pediatric allergist and see if you can get a more definitive answer concerning allergies. Blood tests for allergies are not as accurate as skin pricks. I think that allergists rely mainly on pin pricks.
If you're concerned about the pain of pin pricks be assured that they are not too painful. I've had pin prick tests and so has my granddaughter when she was around 4 or 5 months old. The prick is very shallow; just enough to break the skin. For the most part the only discomfort comes when the test is positive and an itchy hive appears. Finding the allergy is worth a few minutes of discomfort
I would think that the reason her blood test for milk protein allergy was negative is because you haven't been giving her milk. The test shows a chemical that the body produces in reaction to the protein. Since her body is very new it may have not built up enough of that chemical for it to show after she's not been exposed to the protein. This is just a guess on my part. A pediatric allergist would know.
The second is to try going for a couple of weeks feeding only Nutrimagen but pump so that you can keep up your milk supply if the Nutrimagen only doesn't clear up the stool. I believe that breast milk is the best except in certain circumstances.
My daughter found my granddaughter's current allergist by talking with a school nurse. I don't think he's listed in the phone book as specializing in pediatrics but she knew that he did because of students attending school.
You definitely want to know about your baby's allergies before you dry up your milk supply if breast feeding is important to you. There are reasons other than allergies that could be causing stool in the blood.
You are not putting your baby in danger if the Nutrimagen doesn't help. You do want to find and stop the cause of blood in her stool. I've not heard of a baby dying as the result of allergies. If I were you I would continue to breast feed or pump until a pediatric allergist examined your daughter and heard his recommendations. You should be able to get an appointment quickly.
M.K. answers from Los Angeles on May 10, 2010
I just wanted to give you my story to compare with yours. I was also told it was a milk protein allergy, but things worked out differently.
My son was only a few weeks old and had been super fussy all of his life when I notice blood in his stool. The doctor said that it might be a milk protein and possibly soy allergy. I stopped eating all dairy and soy which was difficult becasue soy is in almost every processed food. I didn't eat out because I could not be sure if it was 100% dairy and soy free. I stopped beastfeeding for a few days and gave him Nutramigen. Even though I pumped, I still lost a lot of my supply so when I went back to breastfeeding I had to supplement 50% of the feedings with Nutramigen. Since then, he has been much better. The fussiness and blood in stool dissappeared almost immediately. I have been told that babies usually outgrow the milk protein allergy at about 4-5 months. Since my little one is 6 months this month, I had a small amount of dairy yesterday to test how he was doing. So far, so good.
I hope this comparison will help you.