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Baby has no appetite...
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Baby has no appetite...

My Baby is now 8 months old. Since being born he has had no appetite really, and suffered from reflux. I ended up giving up directly breastfeeding and now exclusively express because he refused the breast so oftenly I ended up expressing more and a bottle he seemed to take better.  He has never really gained alot of weight -- in the intial months of life gaining an average of 2-3 oz per week.  He was on the 91st centile and is now on the 2nd....  

I only manage to feed him when he is asleep. He will not feed when awake. And the difficulties in getting him to go to sleep mean I am pratically house bound. When he does feed he only takes a few ounces at a time, meaning during the night I try to get him  to feed at least every hour till I go to bed at 1am, and then set an alarm for 3-hours later.... At least once every 2weeks he'll done a over 12 hour starve that has last over 24hours before... where he takes no milk or solids. And when he eventually does take food, he takes very little again. So doesn't compensate for the times period.

He has started solids, he does a mixture of baby-led and spoon-fed, and has done since he started at 6 months. These seem to keep his weight gain more steady. But he still doesn't eat an incredible amount and most mealtimes consist of him screaming and throwing his head back into his high chair...

I have cut out dairy and eggs from mine and his diet.  He is on gaviscon for the reflux. I have seen a pediatrician who says that I should stop his milk feeds and up his calorie intake on solids, little and often. But I've tried this and he just won't take enough solids, plus due to how important I think his milk is, I was very reluctant.  But apart from that his reaction was he's gaining and he seems happy enough in himself so it doesn't matter...

I'm so tired of fighting to get food down him. I just want answers and help....

Fiona, and Thomas. x



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Btw - I'm from the UK.  And sorry about typos... rushing typing.
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Please insist on a test called a GI series. That test after years of complaining to Dr.s something was wrong with my son. The dr.s go by weight gain to a baby food should be a pleasure maybe he's in pain.My son had malrotation of intestines, that is left and right sm @lg intestine's twisted. He cried the first year of life, all the time vomited the 2nd year all the time problem was he gained weight so it was missed. We moms know best fight to find the solution. that baby must be in pain. We had surgery to fix this son now is 7. Best wishes. Get answers Push push push Good luck
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Thank-you.  I shall ask for that.  x

As much as I don't want it to be something that serious, I'd would just love to find the answer and help him.... It's no life for either or us.  
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agree you need a full GI work up from a GI doc, DEMAND a referral from your ped....
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Fiona, I can’t believe how similar our stories are!  I too have a baby boy who has a terrible appetite.  I also exclusively pump because he never wanted to latch on.  He was only 5 lbs 14 ounces at birth, despite me taking very good care of myself and doing all the “right” things.  He is now in the bottom 2%.  I have to literally chase him down all day with a bottle of expressed milk- I pump much more than he eats.  I’m lucky if I can get him to drink 20 ounces day.  I've even tried formula with no success.  I try to feed him solids often but he, like your son, will only take a few spoons or feed himself some finger food and but always very little.  The peds says that I just have to keep trying but I’m at my wit’s end- I don’t know what else to do. it seems like he’s getting worse!  GI issues hadn’t occurred to me because he doesn’t seem to be in pain, he just looks more like he can’t be bothered to eat.  My husband and I were commenting to each other that we have NEVER heard him cry in hunger or ask for food.  I’m so worried!  I need to know what’s wrong.  If you discover anything please keep me posted.  

Thanks, Cristina
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I know it's been awhile, but I'm in the exact same situation as you and Feeona with my 5 1/2 month old daughter. Can you please update me and the other mothers who may be going through this, who hope there may be an end or solution to all this misery.

Thanks

Jeannie
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I can't believe there are other moms who are dealing with this same odd eating as my baby.  This is my third child and he is by far the most needy in terms of eating- my little guy was born at 5lbs 12 oz so getting him to put on weight was always important to me.. at first he was travelling along on the 5th percentile but slowly started to drop down and now he is below the scales altogether.  Today he is almost 8 months old and just weighed in at 14lbs.  Since the beginning my LO appeared to have no appetite- he never really cared for eating and when he did he would only consume about 2 oz before starting to twist and turn his head or appear full and disinterested.  He doesn't spit up and doesn't have diarrhea or other symptoms that would lend itself to GI issues so the Dr had me do blood work/urine test at his 6 month appt- it appears that there are some anomolies with his amino acid counts so she referred us to a GI specialist to look into absorption issues.  We are still waiting on that appt.  In the mean time, I feed him mostly when he is asleep because, like feona, he eats better asleep and seems to fuss less and take in more.  Meal times are a nightmere, after a few bites he seems totally disinterested and full.  I'll keep you posted on the outcome- small frequent meals continue (as does my insanity as we adjust our families day around his fussy eating:).  

Good Luck Ladies, Although this ***** now, one day we'll be able to look back at this and say "ya I had one of those babies".

Optimist, Isabelle
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Oh my goodness!  Wish there were more updates on this page, but still glad I found it.  All of the above describes my son exactly!  He has been a terrible eater since birth, he never spit up, threw up, had diahrea, or anything like that, (he weighed 7lbs 14oz and stayed around the 45 percentile until about 4 months when he started declining, incidentally, my 3-yr old daughter has been, and remains in the 95 percentiles from the start).  I had to stop breast feeding him at 5 months because I was having trouble producing since he was eating so little.  (I did try pumping, but I wasn't producing a whole lot).  (I breast fed my daughter for a whole year, with no problem).

Anyway, I just thought he didn't want the breast, so I started bottle feeding with formula.  He seem to take to that better, but that faded quickly also.  All the way up until he was 16 mos.  I don't think he consumed more than 10 - 15 oz per day of ANY fluid, juice or milk.  Back and forth to Drs, they said he wasn't dehydrated so he was taking in enough fluid.  Finally they suggested I see a GI DOCTOR at Childrens Hospital of Philadelphia.  He is now 20-months old, and fell off the bottom of the charts.  He weighs 22 lbs (22.4lbs on a good day).  They've done every test you could think of.  Starting with bloodwork, everything came back normal, they tested urine, stool, he had an endoscope; (Ugh), this ruled out Celiac Disease, he had a sweat test; this ruled out Cystic Fibrosis, more bloodwork, came back normal.  We are now scheduled to see a nutritionist in 2-wks, and Dr. has already suggested tube-feeding at night...which is a last resort which I dread doing!  There HAS TO BE some other reason that he does not want to eat.  I took a leave of absence from work 8-months ago thinking that maybe daycare wasn't spending enough time trying to feed my "picky eater", that proves not to be the case.  I still am back and forth to CHOP.  I'm so concerned, as he's getting older, that he's not receiving enough nutrients to feed the brain.  I can say, he does EVERYTHING a normal 20-mos. old, almost 2-yr old does at his age.  He's smart as a whip!  (So it's apparently not the case right now, I just don't want to wait until it IS the case).  I'm going crazy making 3 different things for breakfast, 3 different things for lunch, and 3 different things for dinner....trying to get him to eat SOMETHING. (2 bites and he pushes it away, or throws it on the floor). I'm so at my wits end!  He went from breast to formula to pediasure and boost (which are high calorie supplements).  I even bought a case of BOOST Juices online ($40 a case) that has 250 calories per 8.5 oz.  He barely drinks half of one a day.  

If anyone out there has any suggestions, or ideas, or results from their children's tests....PLEASE SHARE!

Thank You.
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Also, Reflux was ruled out too.
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All of these comments sound so much like my daughter's situation.  She was 5 1/2 weeks early and 4.10 Lbs.  All the GI doctors have either been worthless or out of ideas for ways to provide workup.  No test results have provided any lead to help her.  Her reflux has been horrible and she has gone from 3rd % to 1 %.  She has had a feeding tube since 14 months old and is now 16 months old.  She has gained good weight with the tube and Boost but no one warned me that she would likely stop drinking her formula herself entirely!  So more problems are created when you try to solve problems with a feeding tube.  It's a terrible position to be in.  I am so glad to have found these comments.....I am no doctor, and I have worked with infants and toddlers for years and know how a child should naturally express hunger--every day.   But after having my daughter and reading comments like I see here, I really am starting to wonder if some kids like our just simply don't need as much intake and calories as all those doctors and charts say they do.  My daughter is smart as can be and is the most happy baby I have ever seen.  She was never willing to eat or drink nearly enough by anyone's standard.  
My women-ly and now motherly instincts have always told me that a child knows what they need and make sure his/her needs are met.  
The first few months my baby would occasionally lightly fuss and squirm.  I hoped she was hungry-right-  so I tried to feed her with no luck.  Finally I would put her down on the floor blanket in desperation and low and behold suddenly she was THRILLED!  This happened often.  I realized she was happy to finally not have a bottle shoved in her face and be allowed to play!  ( After all, she took about an hour to eat 2 or so ounces at a time, and painfully  threw up at least once a day).  I just think some babies just function a little differently than most and the amazing body compensates and somehow makes the most out of what it gets.  My daughter has always liked setting her own standards.  I tell you, if you can't change your baby's eating behavior  (ocupational therapy, speech therapy, GI work, regular pleasant social eating modeling, trying to resolve reflux, changing formulas or diet choices, or even feeding behavioral intencive program or food school through an institute)  then you've got to accept it in some way and let you child be who they are!  My daughter is perfect!
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I am back, I was searching for some old posts I'd made to help a friend and fine this.

almost 3 years on now.  Thomas was put on Ranitidine not long after my last post.  This helped slightly.  But what helped most was time, he was symptomless from about 20 months.  But you need to push for help off your paediatrician, get help, get tests - don't ask, demand!  

My son unfortunately has been diagnosed with epilepsy since then though, so not all plain sailing.  

I wish everyone going through this the best of luck for future, and a great big (hug), I have another son now and we are still going strong with breastfeeding 21 months on.  
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Hi Everyone,
I am so glad I found this blog.   My son is 8 mos and still just under 11lbs. We could write the book on Happies Baby on the Block. I never saw a baby so happy, but his lack of appetite and weight gain is so concerning. Have any of your babies undergone an Endoscopy or PH Probe. He is scheduled to be admitted on Thurs since he will need to be put under General Anesthesia, which is scary considernig his age and size.  Any thoughts or similar stories are appreciated
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Hi everyone!
I'm exactly in the same position. My little boy doesn't want to eat, even though I've tried everything there's out there. Yesterday I went to the Ped, and he told me he wants to see him again in 2 months, because he's not gaining weight as he should. Anyhow, his only advice was to let somebody else feed him... so I'll have to try that (which means I'll have to bring my mom from my country, because we have no relatives here in the States).
I'm sooo exhausted! My baby is a happy little boy who refuses to eat... and he seems to be fine with only 2 oz of formula every time. I tried to breastfeed as often as I can, but to do so he has to be asleep... and I'm kind of petrified thinking that I'm interrupting his brain development every time I take him from his crib to nurse. Please, people out there... tell me there's light at the end of this tunnel. I really need some support, 'cause I'm at my wit's end.
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I didn't know there were so many mothers going through the same situation as me. I have a 9 month old girl. She was 7 lbs 10 oz at birth. I breast fed for about 1 1/2 weeks but I wasn't producing milk and plus it was very painful. I pumped and gave formal as well.  She took to the bottle very well just didn't take in a lot of milk at a time.
When she was 2 months old she started fighting me to drink from the bottle. Everytime she would gag and cry. Once we introduced sold foods she did okay but then it was a fight almost every time. But at doctor visits she was within 25th percentiles. At 7-8 months was when all hell broke loose. My baby completely stopped drinking from the bottle. Doctor said she was one of the extreme babies and recommend us to an occupational therapist. The therapist was at a lose for words. She thought it could be a gastro but my baby wasnt in pain she is just too hyperactive and doesn't want to sit in her high chair. She is very distracted by everything else.
Since she stopped the bottle I have been feeding her while she sleeps. But this task is very difficult. She pulls away once the nipple touches her mouth. Sometimes wont suck for an hour or suck at all. There are nights when she will go without eating for over 12 hours. Eating solid foods is even harder. I'm going absolutely crazy !!! I have been trying everything I could think of to get her to eat and gain weight. I'm using pediasure milk and juice to see if she gets extra calories. I have an appointment with the pediatrician next week. I hope she hasn't lost weight.
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So you went back to breast feeding , it could be she is getting mixed messages, what age did you start the solid food and what was it.?At 9 months old some do start drinking from a sippy cup, maybe introduce that ,give me an idea of food that she will eat in 24 hours ...
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hi
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I just wrote a paragraph and lost it - the basic gist - I have a 13 month old boy - has NEVER been hungry - only takes bottles in sleep, but now naps less so only gets 1 - 2 bottles a day - I offer 3 meals of 3 items, generally doesn't eat much and when he will eat, it is because he is distracted / entertained - we use flashcards, videos, other people...etc....he doesn't eat b/c he is hungry -  and I am also at my wits end!!! I am wondering if anyone has made it to the point when their child has started to eat decently - what helped (any appetite stimulants?) has anyone gone to intensive feeding programs???
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Looks like everyone is having the same issues but no solutions! I'm having the exact same problem with my daughter. She's 5 months old, born 6lbs. She refused to breast feed (would scream and strain to get away) so we bottle fed her expressed milk until 2 months old then moved to formula. Since then she's been awful to feed progressively getting worse. We thought it was silent reflux as she was screaming and thrashing when we tried feeding her. We tried anti reflux milk, gaviscon and now finally nutramigen as the health visitor thinks its CMPI. She's never cried from hunger and now when we try feeding her she doesn't fuss but she turns her head or bats the bottle away. The only time I can feed her is asleep and even then it takes a good hour to an hour and a half to get her to drink by switching the dummy and bottle. She's drinking maybe 3oz at a time and the past few days has dropped from 27oz to 19oz a day. She was following 9th centile but has dropped to 2nd and tbh I wouldn't be surprised if she's dropped further since then as she's not drinking enough so maintain her weight this week. Does anyone know why this could be or what's wrong with her?! I'm so worried she's not going to grow and always concerned about dehydration as I never know if she's going to drink enough each bottle.
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Does anybody have any updates, my baby's 7 and a half months just the sane. I am absolutely petrified.
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Hi ladies, I'm writing back after receiving an email looking for am update, my little guy is 5 and a half years old now but was 8 months when I last posted.

So at the 8 month apt I met with a specialist because my gp diagnosed him with 'failure to thrive' which was heartbreaking emotionally.  We underwent a battery of tests to rule out serious diseases and we did a barium swallow test to check for 'silent reflux'.  He had a little reflux and the dr. Prescribed Prevacid.  After using it for 2 months with no changes we stopped using it (I had my doubts bc he really never seemed bothered, he was simply not hungry).  Truly I felt like GERD was just a default diagnosis when the dr. Doesn't know what's going on.  Part of the assistance from the specialist was a few visits with the paediatric nutritionist which was the most helpful appointments we had.  She watched him at (or pick) and ruled out motor skill issues (so essentially we know at this point that there are no health issues- just a small appetite) so the challenge was now defined as a mission to get the healthiest/fattiest foods into this child via small frequent portions.  I spent the next 4 years trying to do that (and continue to).  Now my LO is 5.5 years old, he's only 30lbs, he's the smallest in his class- but he is in good health and he's a great kid.  I'll tell ya though the nutritionist was awesome; she gave me the info I needed to stop obsessing with pounds, weight gain and the normal for everyone else.  She told me that she's sees babies like this and in her experience, with growth spurts later in life they just get hungry to put on a lot of weight in a short period of time (in her words 'he'll grow in the beer and pizza days of adolescence'.) whether that happens or not, I still don't know but she did give me lots of tips which is completely the opposite of any normal health food advice- essentially she put me on a mission to 'boost' everything he ate with high calorie additives (ie. peanut butter, butter, gravy, flaxseed meal, full fat cheese, starch etc.). If he's only going to eat 1tbs of food at a meal I had to make it the richest possible.  I still do this.  I'm happy to share finger food ideas which worked for my LO.  My best advice here is to accept that your child may never follow the 'normal range' and once you rule out health issues, just focus on the great kid you have and just take it 1 small meal at a time.  Wishing you all the best!
Isabellemomof3 (4 actually but I won't change my name;)
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Ghank you so so much for your update and glad to hear your little one is hralthy and happy.
My Alice is 7 months and failure to thrive has been since 13 weeks. Just will not eat, or drink milk, a couple if ounces can take 2 hours, been this way since about 4 weeks. She refuses the spoon, will try finger food but only swallows small amounts. Any tips on finger food would be so much appreciated. She's seen so many drs, ped's , dietician. Speech therapist tomorrow. Going to ear nose and throat specialist and for an endoscopy. However she is the happiest most wonderful little girl,  she just has no appetite and does not want to eat, ever!
I'm so grateful for your update I really am, thank you and for the advice about accepting that this is how she is as I really do think this is it, this is my baby and this is thd way she will stay, I get so upset and worried sick. But she's happy and as far as we know she's healthy.
Thank you again xxx
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My almost 7 months old boy is the same way since he was about 2 months. I am constantly worried about his milk intake and weight gain. I am glad that I found this post and know that some other moms are going through the same thing. Sometimes I feel no friends or family can understand our pain and they always just tell us he'll eat when he's hungry. But he's never hungry...
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Hi, how are you all doing? Any updates? My little girl is now over a year with no improvement. She's now actually losing weight and completely stopped feeding herself anything, she has no milk what so ever and believe me we have tried every bloody milk, she only eats when she is distracted ie crawling for a favourite toy and we put food in her mouth and hopefully she doesn't think and swallows it. Screams in a high chair and won't even tough food. I hope you're all doing better we are so scared for our angel now :(
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