My Poor Baby Needs Help

Updated on January 10, 2007
C.S. asks from Toledo, OH
43 answers

my 8 week old daughter has had problems with her formula since the day she was born and her poor little stomach hurt so bad. finally two days ago the doctor switched her formula to soy but it still doesnt seem to be working this poor little girl vomits like the exorcist at every feeding and the doctors wont switch her again what should i do?

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So What Happened?

First of all i thank all you wonderful mothers for your responses. I took her to the emergency room and we had to stay the night but they did rule out pyloric stenosis! because it did run in my family they were concerned but thats not the case. She has a real bad case of acid reflux and instead of the zantac that she has been on, they gave me prevacid. I still think that im going to switch her to ailmentum so it will be easier on her tummy. Thank you all so much for your help.

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K.L.

answers from Toledo on

hello.. my daughter had exactly the same problem she went through all sorts of formula and the one that came out to be perfect was nutramigen..K.

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M.E.

answers from Cincinnati on

Have you tried nutramagen? Also, Highlands homeopathic colic
tablets. you can put them in the formula. Also, camamile tea helps. Good luck

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K.D.

answers from Toledo on

Her stomach may still be upset from the regular formula and you may need to try something more sensitive on her GI tract. My daughter was put on Nutramigen when I had this problem with her. It is very expensive, but with a prescription WIC will pay for it. Try it for a couple of days. The canned liquid formula is cheaper.

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M.

answers from Cincinnati on

I know this may seem like an unusual idea, but given your daughter's suffering, I think it's worth at least suggesting it to you: try to breastfeed her. Contact a board certified lactation consultant (an IBCLC) and start pumping -- your breastmilk will be better for her than ANY formula. If she is suffering from cow milk and soy milk sensitivities and/or allergies, you'll need to stop eating/drinking those things too (I have to do this for my son who is allergic to dairy - it is absolutely possible and once you get the hang of the dietary changes, it's pretty easy). But it sounds like your poor baby's tummy is crying out for breastmilk - not formula. Breastmilk is waaaay gentler, and it is DESIGNED for your baby (human baby = human milk -- not cow milk or soy formula).

Any amount of breastmilk you can give your daughter is worthwhile - even if you have to give 1/2 hypoallergenic formula and 1/2 breastmilk. There are enormous health benefits for BOTH of you. I think it's a crime that people (pediatricians, formula companies, many moms) act like it's no big deal to formula feed... and I guess it's not, until you end up having a child who suffers so greatly from this substitute for real, human mother's milk. I think more people need to talk about the reality - that breastfeeding is best for sensitive infant tummies, that it reduces the mother's risk of breast cancer & ovarian cancer, that it reduces the child's risk of illness, cancer, diabetes, obesity. I'm so sorry your daughter is suffering and that you guys are having to go through this -- I wish there was more support (prenatally AND postnatally) for moms to help us breastfeed. Our society is way behind on this one.

Start doing some research on http://www.kellymom.com about dairy and soy sensitivities, about relactation. Contact a local IBCLC. And get in touch with your local La Leche League leaders for support, accurate breastfeeding information, and to meet other moms who are in the same boat as you are:
http://www.lllusa.org/web/ToledoOH.html

I really hope your daughter can start to feel better soon -- I know it's awful to feel like there's not much you can do. But you CAN try this - please consider trying to relactate and breastfeed your daughter. Yes, it will be hard work to start at 8 weeks, but with determination, support, and accurate information, YOU CAN DO IT! You *can* give her some breastmilk.

Also, congratulations on the birth of your daughter! :)

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T.S.

answers from Cincinnati on

C., OMG I feel your pain. I was in your spot 1yr ago. My daugter had the worst problems. She will always vomit don't let that bother you. Now what kind of soy did they put her on?? Do you give her gas drops? I used to put a few drops right in my daughters bottle you will be amazed how the bubbles just disappear. Also I would have her drink a couple of oz burp her then finish the bottle. She also had colic and acid reflux SO i would have to put her to sleep on her side or on this special crib wedge i bought for the acid reflux it keeps them on an incline.(life saver) I got it at once upon a child 13$
Also if you don't feel confortable with her doctor not switching her formula switch dr's YOU are the mom and ONLY the mom knows best. I do know it would take a couple of days after the switch to really be affective so do keep that in mind
Email me if you want more advice
GOOD LUCK

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J.

answers from Cincinnati on

hi C.~ it was brought to my attention by one of my co-workers who is part of this group and she asked me to respond to your email. i too have a 4 month old daughter who had the exact same problem as you have described. in the beginning i felt over whelmed and thought it was associated with being a first time mom. my daughter was throwing up on a regular basis ALL the time and it was projectial too. after many doctors appointments we found out that she had PYLORIC STANOSIS. they say that it is most common in boys but girls can sometimes to have it. what it is, where the stomach and the small intestine meet the open(muscle) is not big enough to allow the food(formula) to digest(enter) so it sits and then comes right back up. you need to get her to another doctor right away as it does require surgery. they say it is a common surgery but much needed as once they diagnose it they will probably do the operation the next or same day. it will make your baby feel SOOOOO much better. my daughter is like a new baby these days. C. here are the steps i went through before they sent me to the hospital for the ultra sound which detected the PYLORIC STANOSIS. change formaula (brands) (2) put cereal in her formaula (3) prescribed zantac for acid reflex (4) put her on soy (as she may be allergic to her formula). C. it is very very important that you not let this gone on any longer. make somebody (doctor) listen as each time your baby pukes it puts acids in her belly and can cause it to bleed. i am not trying to make you panic (just aware) that you need to see another doctor today or tomorrow as it is that important. worst case go the hospital. you can email me directly at [email protected]____.com or call at ###-###-#### if you have any other questions or concerns. take care.

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K.N.

answers from Cleveland on

wow it's terrible that so many parents and childrenahve to go through this but it does sound like reflux, soy formula can help but that isn't going to be nearly enough to fix the problem. pediatric gerd(gastic esophigal reflux disease or soemthing like that) is very serious my son used to get stuff so far up his throat that he would stop breathing and turn blue. he was put on a perscription to keep his acid levels down for like his first year and he did outgrow it, i know someone whose daughter is now 3 and she has it much worse and still has some much trouble keeping food down that they have talked of putting a feeding tube in because she is malnurished. get a new doctor, have the tests done, they will either have you feed your baby a bottle of have to put a tube in to put a dye in thier tummy and then do x-ray's to see how they are reacting, it isn't pleasent but it is more than worth it if it fixes the problem. good luck, you'll be in my prayers.

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K.

answers from Dayton on

C.,

My baby also had these same reactions. I breastfed and eliminated dairy from my diet, then had to take out all soy too and switched to drinking rice milk for myself. You can't use that as a formula, but there are formulas that have neither dairy nor soy in them. I would discuss this with your doctor, and maybe even switch doctors if they aren't working with you. My little girl was able to tolerate dairy and soy around one year, so it's something they grow out of, but no use (in my mind) to suffer until then. Good luck!

K.

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J.C.

answers from Cleveland on

Hi C.~ this sounds all too familiar. My son who is now 3 also had a problem digesting. Not only digesting, but eating. I tried to breastfeed, but he didn't seem to latch on, and when he did he could not breathe. So I then turned to the playtex nurser, and similac. When he was feeding it was very unusual. I could actually hear the formula hitting rock bottom. He would suck then cry then grasp for air. My peditrician switched him to Similac Alimentum. This was the foulest smelling formula I have ever smelled, but it seemed to work for a while. He was finally eating better, and not vomiting as much. Well when he was about 8 weeks old he was supposed to go sleep at Grandma's house for 1 night because I was so exhauted from him crying that I couldn't see straight. She came to get him, and before they were getting ready to leave I wanted to try to feed him. That's when she noticed that something was very wrong. She suggested that I take him the the ER Immediatley. I did and they said that there was nothing wrong, but they kept him for a few hours for observation. They wanted to watch him feed. When he ate they immediately admitted him. He had an IV in his head, and was hooked up to a heart monitor, and a machine that monitored his breathing. They soon found out that he had a condition that would not allow him to suck, breathe, and swallow like normal babies can do up to the age of 6 months. He did not have to have surgery, but was kept in the hospital for 5 days, and when I took him home I had to feed him very slowly, and pull the nipple out to allow him to breathe. He did eventually grow out of it, but it was scary to see him in so much pain all the time. I know what your going through....just remember that it won't last forever. She should be seen for this again if you are not happy with the results of your Dr. seek a 2nd opinion, and keep seeking until she is better.

~ Good Luck ~
Juile C

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M.K.

answers from Cleveland on

i go through this with my 5 mo old what i did was they put him on soy and he had the same problem was in pain i couldnt stand seein him that way so i put him back on reg formula eventhough he threw up like that i found out he threw up slightly lesss with powder formula vs consintrate then i found that it was even a little les when i switched him to the genaric formula i now feed him parents choice regular formula with dha and ara from walmart and i just learned to deal with the puke my son is 5 mo old and 16 lb 5 oz he's no sufferin by pukin and hes not in pain he is as healthy as an ox M.

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H.S.

answers from Dayton on

My son is allergic to formula. I started to pump and built up my milk supply. I'm glad I don't have to give him that nasty stuff anymore. I will never bottle feed again. I did have to change my eating habits a little because he's sensitive but its worth it.

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K.I.

answers from Cincinnati on

Try goat's milk. Many babies with problems with formula can easily digest it. It is available in grocery stores now, or even make friends with a farmer.
Best wishes,
K.

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J.W.

answers from Columbus on

my son had problems with formula as well. The doctors told me that it takes upto a week to see the difference of switching formula. Has she been checked for acid reflux?? My son ended up getting put on medication for acid reflux because he vomitted so badly. Hope this helped.

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B.N.

answers from Toledo on

I HOPE YOUR POOR BABY FEELS BETTER SOON. I UNDERSTAND WHAT YOU'RE GOING THROUGH. MY YOUNGEST DAUGHTER WENT THROUGH SOMETHING SIMILAR. WE STARTED HER OUT ON SOY FORMULA WHEN SHE WAS BORN B/C MY OLDEST DAUGHTER HAD TO BE ON IT SO WE THOUGHT WE WOULD SAVE TIME AND START OUR NEW DAUGHTER ON IT. IT TURNED OUT THAT THAT WAN'T GOOD ENOUGH. SHE HAD ALL THE SAME SYMPTOMS YOUR BABY HAS. SHE WAS LIKE THE EXORCIST BABY, WITH ALL THE SPITTING UP. IT TURNED OUT THAT SHE HAS ACID REFLUX. WE ALSO HAD TO KEEP CHANGING HER FORMULA. SHE STARTED OUT ON ISOMIL, THEN GENTLE EASE AND THEN WE FINALLY TRIED ALIMENTUM (BY SIMILAC). IT'S FOR BABIES WITH A MILK PROTEIN SENSITIVITY AND COLIC LIKE SYMPTOMS. SHE JUST TURNED 1, AND IS DOING GREAT, SHE STILL HAS ACID REFLUX BUT HOPEFULLY SHE WILL OUTGROW THAT. SHE DID SPIT UP UNTIL SHE WAS ABOUT 7 MONTHS OLD. HER DR SAID SOME BABIES JUST SPIT A LOT, BUT SHE WASN'T IN PAIN ANYMORE. I COULD LAY HER DOWN AND SHE WOULDN'T SCREAM, AND FINALLY STARTED TO SLEEP THROUGH THE NIGHT. GOOD LUCK TO YOU AND YOUR BABY.

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H.R.

answers from Toledo on

Hmmm...I really don't know what to suggest except maybe next time you can try breastfeeding? I mean, it IS what is natural and very rarely do children have a bad reaction to breast milk. I know of so many people who have children that say "Oh, my baby always has an upset stomach, always crying, always throwing up..." and it is always connected with someone who is using formula. Don't get me wrong, I had to stop nursing for medical reasons with my second child, but I can 100% say all of her problems started when I started formula. It is just not natural. Maybe you can find a breastmilk bank and try that. There are women who donate their milk and it gets sterilized and frozen for other babies to use if they need it. I am not sure what the specifications are, what the qualifications are, but it sounds like a wonderful program. It is so sad that your baby has had to go through this for 8 weeks. I totally understand, this is such a hard thing to go through! I hope that you and your baby can find a solution. It is never good when a little one is suffering. Take care and good luck, I will be thinking about you!

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J.S.

answers from Cincinnati on

Ask your doctor about Pediasure. My son was extremely premature and would vomit everything he had. The doctor finally prescribed pediasure and it worked wonders. Hope that helps!

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S.

answers from Dayton on

Hi C.,

My son had trouble with spitting up and waking up screaming in the night. Our doctor put him on Nestle Good Start Supreme and prescribed Zantac at first which helped short term but unfortunately that is based on weight so as the baby grows the dosage must be changed frequently. Then they started him on Prevacid solutabs and they worked great. Supposedly that actually helps to correct the reflux problem. Also sitting them upright for at least 30 minutes after a feeding helps too. Best of luck!

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T.P.

answers from Canton on

Hi C....my youngest son was born 8 weeks prematurely, and he has the same problem. The difference between your situation and mine is that I breastfeed, and he still does it.
I would tell your pediatrician about it. It sounds more like reflux, than anything. They can prescribe Zantac or Reglan for your daughter. They say the Zantac should start working pretty quickly. That's what my son is on. It took a good 3 weeks for us to really see a difference in him, though. And even now, he still spits up a lot. But not nearly as much as before. Before, we could estimate that he was vomitting up to 1/2 of what he was eating, at every feeding.
And of course, because he spits up so much, that means I have to nurse him quite frequently. He's now 8 months old and still nurses every 2 hours, for the most part. Sometimes he goes a little longer, but not much.
Good luck with this. And congratulations on the birth of your daughter!

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K.H.

answers from Youngstown on

i had this exact problem with my daughter. she would puke to high heaven and it seemed like she wasnt able to keep any of it down. the dr tested her for acid reflux and she did have that. she was put on meds for it and it did calm the puking down alittle but not enough to my satisfaction. i changed her formula myself. i went to the top of the line (very expensive alimentum) and between that and the meds, it worked like a charm. after i switched her formula myself, and seen that there was major improvement, i then went back to her doctor and told him what i found and what i had done. i told him that if he didnt switch her formula, that i was switching doctors. i would switch to one that cared alittle more about his patients. he did as i asked. and the throwing up stopped. mommys are sometimes more accurate then drs. it doesnt take 8 years of to school to know when something is wrong with your child. you live with them and you know them best. just follow you gut feeling, 99.99% of the time, you are not wrong.

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C.

answers from Cleveland on

We had the same problem with my son at that age. Have your child checked for reflux. It is a non-invasive test where they have the baby drink a barium (sp?) solution while x-raying the stomach to see how far up the throat it comes. He went on baby Pepcid until 9 months. Worked like a charm. He was a totally different baby in a matter of days. We also added 1 tsp of rice cereal to his night bottle (on doctor's recommendation) and this helped him to sleep longer too. Good luck! We never had to give him special formula.

K.K.

answers from Cleveland on

My son had a similiar problem. Not to scare you, but his condition resulted in surgery. There is a condition called hypertrophic pyloric stenosis. This occurs on average in about 1 out of 500 babies. The muscle leading from the stomach into the small intestine is builds up and eventually closes, making it impossible for the food to pass into the stomach-it then comes back up, within 15-30 minutes of eating. If you feel strongly that it isn't the formula, tell your ped. that you want a referral to the er. (If you live in Akron, I'd go straight to ACH because the other hospitals won't see infants). The only solution to pyloric stenosis is surgery, unfortunately. My son had his at 19 days, but the problem can occur usually up to approx. 6 months. My pediatrician tried the switching formula routine and kinda brushed it off, but my 'mommy instinct' told me something was wrong. I sincerely hope nothing serious is wrong! Good luck! Oh - just so you aren't too freaked out about all this - Aidan is a perfectly healthy baby - he turns 1 on Sunday, and is walking, talking and all that great stuff!! He was instantly better with his feedings after surgery. I hope this helps a little - here is a link if you want more info. http://www.eapsa.org/parents/resources/pyloric.cfm

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P.S.

answers from Columbus on

Hello, my 9 week old has reflex. Ask your docter about that we went though 2 formulas. We have him on carnation good start. It helps alot. My 3 year old never had a problem.

P. S

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S.C.

answers from Cincinnati on

I wish I had some advice to help you, but I need help with this also. My 5 month old son has been spitting up just like that since he was born. We have tried many formulas, but nothing has helped. I would suggest not switching her much, because when we switched our son, he seemed to get worse. I wish you much luck.

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C.F.

answers from Rochester on

It usually takes a few days (at least 4) to find out if the new formula is working or not, so that is why they won't switch her yet. You can try Simethicone/GasX, which helps with gas pains. You can get it over the counter in infant drops. If that isn't helping enough, you can give her baby Tylenol or baby Motrin to help her with the pain. A few things to help with getting rid of gas and helping reflux: Elevate the head of her crib about 4 inches (that will help keep the acid down in her stomach), keep her head elevated for about 2 hours after every feeding, burp her very well after every feeding and throughout the feeding, consider which bottles you are using. I've heard many times that the Dr. Brown's bottles are the best for reducing the amount of air that goes in their stomach, and helping with reflux. They have a few extra parts and are a bit more expensive than others. My cousin who has worked in childcare for over 20 years says that they are the best, and has seen kids switch to these bottles and then not have any more problems. Good luck.

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N.F.

answers from Cleveland on

Hello C.! My son too had the same issues. My doctor put him on Alimentum formula. It is made by Similac and is very pricey. I also discovered that he has problems w/ the powdered form. He gags and chokes on it. But with the ready to fed he is like a totally different child. He is now 4 months old and has been on alimentum since 6 weeks. Good luck!

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L.R.

answers from Dayton on

Hi, I am a mom of a 14 yr old girl and a 13 yr old girl.. My oldest daughter had the same problem as your daughter, she colud;nt take any of the formulas and her dr did a upper gi and found out she had reflux. I put my daughter on whole milk (vitamin D) with a little bit of caro corn syrup.. She did really good with being on the milk at first her dr was upset that i did it.. But she started gaining the weight that she needed. Maybe you need to ask your dr about your baby having reflux.. From L. R

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P.H.

answers from Cincinnati on

My son was born premature and we went through a lot of different formulas. The one that worked for him was Enfamil Lacto-free LIPIL. It was a little more expensive, but he kept it down - no spitting up at all. This has no milk product in it, sometimes babies tummies just don't want it. I was concerned that he would be allergic to milk products, but he wasn't. He is now 3 and Loves milk! Good luck!

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D.

answers from Cincinnati on

Hi C.
My first 2 children did the exact same thing, my first born was the worse. They were switched to soy milk as well. After feeding your daughter put her in a pumpkin seat up right and let her sit for 45 minutes to digest. This helped some but I also had to mix rice cereal in her bottle to help it stay down too. Now with my second child I did just feed him a little cereal before his bottle and that seemed to help him. The project vomitng continued till she was about 9 months old. My daughter had an upper GI at 6 weeks old and had a reflux in her esophagus. My first born also was very colicly. Talk to your doctor about getting something for her. I know what you are going thru.
D.

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B.R.

answers from Columbus on

If they still have Infamil, (not sure what your using) try that. Simethicone may help too. Sounds like she has acid reflux and sometimes that is due to an under developed stomach muscle (opening. Get a second opinion. They could put her on something to keep her food down. She should grow out of it. Good Luck!

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C.S.

answers from Youngstown on

C.,

That same thing happened with my daughter. She not only was throwing it up but also suffering from severe constipation and pain as you can imagine.
The doctor finally put her on Alimentum. It is a very expensive ready to feed formula where the protiens are predigested so to make it easier on the babys stomach to tolerate.
Ask your doctor about that.
If you happen to get help through the WIC program they will allow you to get it through them as long as you have a doctors prescription for it.
My daughter was like a new child once she switched to that. Good Luck!

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T.G.

answers from Cincinnati on

C.,
My daughter vomitted like it was going out of style. Eventually we got it solved by giving her Similac Alimentum (The can- pre-made up and no mixing up is needed)
Although it was expensive, it was well worth the lessening of vomit everyday. It took many formulas later and this worked best for us. Hope this helps and good luck!

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S.W.

answers from Cincinnati on

I second the suggestion to relactate. It is definitely possible to do and you are still pretty early postpartum. I would call La Leche League or a Lactation Consultant to help. You may need to use a supplemental nursing system (SNS) temporarily. If you still can express milk, you can just start putting her to the breast. The more she nurses, the more you will produce. Plan on spending a couple of days just sitting around and nursing the baby.

You may or may not need to cut out dairy from your diet. It would depend on how sensitive your child is to it. You won't know unless you try. Good luck!

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N.C.

answers from Dayton on

I see you have a lot of good responses already! Just my experience- my son had the same problem when I started supplementing his breastfeeding with formula. The docs said he had acid reflux, and prescribed zantac, but it only helped a little. Plus it tasted horrible and he had to take it 3 times a day. Something told me that it wasn't the right solution...so upon the advice of a couple of friends I switched the formula to Nestle good start dha/rha. I had previously used Similac advanced dha/rha and had even tried soy (which he wouldn't drink). Within two weeks the vomiting stopped. I even took him off of the medicine and he was fine! I couldn't believe it, but it worked! Like others have said, you can't always trust the docs to know more than what your intuition tells you!

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J.

answers from Cleveland on

I had similar problems with my oldest daughter. We tried many soy formula's, but the carnation soy did the trick. Keep in mind that it also takes up to 2 wks to get used to a new formula. Good luck!!

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H.

answers from Columbus on

I went through the same thing with my lil lady... The first thing for a mom to learn is that the doctor is not always right, a mother's intuition can be way more powerfull. Having said that, if you don't feel this is the right formula... switch her. Prosobe is what ended up working for us after switching several times. Hopefully you find one that works best for your little one.

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C.L.

answers from Lima on

My younger sister's son also had this problem a few years before me. She took her son to the hospital it was so bad, and they ended up putting rice cereal in his bottles after doing test and trying all sorts of things. It really worked for her son. My son when I had him a few years later went through the same thing, so I tried the same things and it helped alot. He still threw up of course but not the whole bottle like he was. Good luck with which ever couse of action you use and find that works for your baby.

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R.

answers from Cleveland on

I think Similac Alimentum is what you need. Or something like it. It is dairy and soy free. Try using the one without added iron. That hurts sensitive tummies.

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T.M.

answers from Toledo on

I had the same problem with my 9 wk old. They had to put him on infamel Nutramigen. It is hypoallergenic formula. When Benjamin was on similac and on isomil he would scream when he had a bowel movement. We also discovered that he has acid reflux so I have to give him zantac twice a day. If the doctor refuses to try another formula I would find a new Pediatrician. Hope everything works out for you.

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J.B.

answers from Dayton on

I went through the exact same thing a couple months ago with my youngest daughter. It sounds to me like it is probably a condition called pyloric stenosis that can be tested with a simple upper GI scan. I do have to say though that it wasn't the case with my daughter. My daughter projectile vomited across a room every time she ate and everything she ate. They changed her to formula and switched it several times and put her on reflux meds. It seemed to make it like 10 percent better, but not enough to just accept it. The doctors all said she was perfectly fine and healthy. I need to tell you that projectile vomiting like this could also be a result of a head trauma. My daughter has a condition called AVM (really rare) and had an aneurism when she was about a week old due to the condition and had a very large blood clot in her brain and actually lost 1/8 of her brain. So all her vomiting was actually due to head trauma so PLEASE insist on getting her thoroughly checked out. I will say that I would first request the upper GI. I hope this helps and if you need anything else feel free to ask me!

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S.H.

answers from Cleveland on

Ihad a problem similar to yours with my little girl, we ended up switching her to low iron formula, her little body just couldn't handle the extra iron, good luck.

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A.P.

answers from Cleveland on

C. my daughter had the same problem the doctors had to switch her formula a few times to to find the right one alimentum worked best for her tell your doctor about it good luck

Y.W.

answers from Cincinnati on

My daughter did this also. She was diagnosed with acid reflux disease at age 3 months. She took her medication and did great all the way up to her first birthday when everything just sort of disipated. She is six now and healthy. We haven't had any other major problems with the acid reflux. Has your doctor looked into this? They usually ask if you have a family history of acid reflux.
Y.

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B.W.

answers from Cincinnati on

I went thru this same thing with my son. I finally switched him to Nestle Good Start Supreme formula. He is doing great with it, and it is cheaper than Similac. You don't get as many coupons but it has worked wonders for him.

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