GERD (Acid Reflux) Community
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Avatar universal

Infant with GERD and delayed gastric emptying

I have a 3month old son who is GERD positive and has delayed gastric emptying. At 2 months he was diagosed with silent reflux and put on Zantac. He did very well for 1 week. He had his 2month shots and then spiraled out of control. He went to the hospital because he wasn't eating and his reflux seem extremely aggreviated. The hospital took adomial ex-rays (which were normal) and ran some blood tests that were normal. The hospital couldn't run certain tests because his blood kept clotting. His dose of Zantac was increased and he was put on Nutragamin formula. He was even worse after this. His feedings were extremely difficult and the volume of his feedings decreased even more. Then he was put on Prevacid 1/2 tab 1x a day and we put him back on Soy formula. We met with a ped GI specialist who increased his Prevacid 2x a day 1/2 tab and Carafate 3x a day. Gi Dr ordered another blood test for allergens, but that clotted as well. He has gotten progressively worse each day since the increase dose of Prevacid. It has been absolutely horrible. You can tell he is hunger, but in pain whenever he drinks. He had an ultrasound which was normal then an upper GI which indicted delayed gastric emptying. The Pharmacy had to order the medication (Eryped), so we haven't started that yet. In the meantime, worse has gotten even worse. Yesterday he only had 6oz the entire day. I gave him a little AJ mixed with water, so he would have some fluid in his body. He took the juice without any problems, but completely rejected the formula. It was amazing how as soon as the formula touched his mouth he screamed and then took the juice willingly. I'm at a loss as to what to do. If you have any suggestions, I would really appreciate it. He had such a bad day yesterday that I stopped the Prevacid dosage last night just to see what would happen. I gave him some infant tylenol this morning (no Prevacid) and he drank 4ozs, which is more than half of what he had yesterday the entire day. Any help or suggestions would be great. This has been the hardest thing I have ever gone through. My son is in extreme pain and discomfort. He screams and cries during every feeding all day long. I don't think the Dr understands how bad the situation has gotten. We need some relief. I'm desperate for any advice.    
24 Responses
620923 tn?1452919248
Hi Lucy,
I am so sorry to hear ur little guy is in such distress.May I ask, did they check to see if he is allergic to the formula?
It may be a constant in ingrdient in each that u tried, but it could be something like that.

I pray u  find ur answers soon!

Avatar universal
Hi, I'm a nutritionist.  I don't have children of my own.  Mine are adopted and I adopted then when they were no longer babies.  So, I do not know the answer to this question.  Is it too late to start breast feeding?  If your doctor says that you can still breast feed, start breast feeding him right away.  NO formula.  Just 100% breast milk as far as milk is concerned.  Don't start weening him off the breast milk until he is 12 months old.  Then (and not before) start weening him off, cutting him back until he's off the breast.  This should be done slowly.  It should take no less than 6 months.  Breast fed children are so much healthier.  In so many ways they benefit.  Emotionally, mentally and physically.  Babies should be breast fed until they are 18 months.  If you can't breast feed because you work full time, AND you have a husband who works so you do not absolutely have to work, stop working full time and go part-time.  Your kid is more important than your pay check.  Good luck!
Avatar universal
Forget about asking your doctor if it's too late to start breast feeding....Contact the Le Leche League (google this) and ask them.  They are the experts when it comes to breast feeding.  Their advice is better than a doctors on this subject (and most doctors will admit that).  
Avatar universal
Hi Lucy:

My husband and I are having very similar problems with our 7 month old.  Have you had resolution with your son's problems?

Our daughter has been on antacid medicaiton since last December and she is just not doing well at all.  They started her with Zantac. It seemed to help for a little bit but then everything just got worse. They put her on Prevacid and she is still taking that. She goes through phases where she does not want to eat at all and it is a struggle to get her to eat 6 oz a day. She only weighs 12 pounds and she actually lost weight at her last appointment. We had the upper GI endoscopy done and the ph probe.  Everything came back normal. We don't know yet if she has reflux really because she was taking the Prevacid when they did the ph probe.  The pediatric GI just put her on erythromycin for delayed gastric emptying last Tuesday and it does not seem to be helping at all. She had 3 episodes of massive vomiting last night and today she has only had 2 oz of food.  

My husband and I are just desperate as she is losing weight now.  

I appreciate any advice.
Avatar universal
Hi Lucy,

I am so sorry to hear about your child. I am currently going through what seems to be the beginning of what you went through. I mostly wanted to comment on the posts about going back to breastfeeding and the la leche league. I am 100% an advocate for bf and understand how important it is, however people do not realize how insulting it is when you have a child that is going through such medical difficulties. There seems to be a lack of sensitivity there. As if as parents you wouldn't want to do what is best for your child. I just had to switch my child to formula bc of her allergies and gi problems. It kills me to not be able to bf, but she is not nearly in as much pain as she use to be. I fully respect what the women of La Leche League have to say,but this is a medical concern for a dr to handle.
Avatar universal
my son is 8 months old and we are going through the same things.. he stopped wanting his bottle shortly after his 6 months shots... We have had 2 swallow studies (came back good) and a scope done which showed everyting is good on the inside. He is still not wanting his bottle. We give him 7.5 mg of Prevacid twice a day which seem to help but it isn't enough... The only thing we can get him to do is eat  his formula in his Rice cereal or oatmeal so you many wanna give that a try so your little one is not losing weight.

They sent us to a speech thearopist calling it "behavioral" thought maybe it was a sensory issue.  When we met with her she said nothing is wrong w/ our child other than he has severe reflux. While we ere there for 30 min she saw the acid coming up in his throat and him choking on it.... This is so hard a frustrating. Now we are going back to the GI specialist who is 3.5 hrs away. We want to have a 2nd opinion but there is no place close to home and most places have a 3 month waiting list! The speech thearopist said the longer he goes not eating, the harder it is going to be to "teach" him that not all things that go in his mouth cause pain, which is why she thinks he will need eat fruits or take his bottle  :(
620923 tn?1452919248
Infants and toddlers that have reflux issues may have speech delay...and should work with a ST.....

And it could be that ur child associates the bottle with not feeling well and could be y he/she will not take it....try pedialite in a cup with a straw and see if they take that.....but since this developed after the 6 month shots, there may have been something in the mix that caused the flare up.

good luck
Avatar universal
I could have written that myself....my son stopped eating after screaming during bottles for about 3 months. Also he was always upset and seemed so hungry. He was losing weight....puking a ton.  FINALLY I took him to Boston to see a better GI. It turned out he had esophagitis from reflux that was out of control. Some changes we made that helped that include:

-1 tablespoon of rice to every oz of formula....like seriously I think this helped the most. Buy beechnut gentle texture...it flows through nipples more evenly.
-prevacid dose given 2-3X a day.
-switched to elemental formula (elecare)

Now he's puking a ton because of his delayed gastric emptying, so I thinks he has to go on meds for that too...but his other symtoms (eating aversion) are gone. You may want to try taking away other foods that might be allergens, and maybe starting over all his first after a week or two.  PS: formula can safely be mixed to like 24-26 calories. PLUS the rice adds like 15 calories per oz...so yeah...he pukes a ton but he's finally growing.
Avatar universal
I know how you feel.  My son just turned 3 months and is starting to not want his bottles.  He takes prevacid twice a day (half a tablet in the morning and the other at night) and is taking erythromycin 3 times a day.  He was drinking 6oz with no problem now it is sometimes a fight to get him to drink it.  He doesn't sleep that well in the morning or evening and has started to have crying fits where he screams.  He has gained weight good according to the doctors but he doesn't look plump like my other 3 children did at his age and I have strangers asking how old and when I tell them they say he is tiny.  I'm very frustrated and stressed.  I feel like I am a breaking point and just wish he could eat and sleep comfortably.  I really hope he doesn't get worse.  I feel like something is really wrong..my gut is never wrong.  I hope things get better for you.
Avatar universal
I"m 71 and my mom said the same things ... without the medical terms.

I have had acid reflux all  my life ... and in my 30s bile reflux started. There was no temporary relief for bile reflux - there is for acid reflux but not bile reflux.

A couple of years ago, out of sheer desperation I tried ice cream. During a bile reflux attack (they're bloody awful) I ate ice cream ... and the last four times in a row it's worked. 1 to 2 cups of ice cream and 20 minutes later I'm completely ok. I don't lie down during an attack ... or after eating ice cream.

Any flavour seems to work - frozen yoghurt does not.

Good luck - I'll say a wee prayer for your son.

Gawdz reflux is horrible.
Avatar universal
did anyone check the babies for lactose intolerance.  the lactose could be in formulas, or caseinate in other products...which is a milk derivative.  that and delayed gastric emptying could be an awful combo.
hoping by now things have been resolved.
Avatar universal
First of all we rely on doctors way to much as if the were GODS. A mothers intinct is way more vb powerful. so if your instincts say that you should be bf then do it. Doctors do not know best all the time and they are definately looking out ones own interest. It is rare to find that doctor that isn't but they are out there. My 5 week old stated having vb problems after I began supplementing with formula after 3days from leaving the hospital. my daughter began spitting up and crying as if in pain and not - sleeping well.  I spoke with a homeopathic doc and he told me to exclusively breastfeed and prescribed two remedies to create more breast milk. its been almost 2 wks and she still is slitting up and once spit up blood. At this point my husband had enough and wanted to start putting infant oatmeal cereal with breatmilk. That will help the milk to not come up as much and help to neutralize the acidity and as the babies body matures and begins to empty the stomach faster it will repair and damage done to the GI tract more quickly. Now as for formula, a la leche league consultant told the morning my baby girl spit up blood is that formula can cause damage and symptoms that last weeks even after no more formula is being given. I recommend for those who can't breastfeed or choose to not make the sacrifice then consider goats milk it has many properties close to breastmilk(go to white farm.com) it maay need to be reduce by water or youcan buy pasturized powder form a vitaminshoppe.com. A lady on these forums wrote in and had given goats milk to all 3 of her children. The final thing I need to mentio is to all of you especilly those moms that mention that you see your child more in pain after their shots, all I can stress is do your research about vaccines. If anything wait until 2 yrs old to vaccinne along with a healthy lifestyle for the child and family everything will be fine. Educate yourself there are many books on raising a unvaccinated child. I personally cc hose to wait to vaccinate my children my first child is now 2 1/2 unvaccinated and healthy never has gone to the doctors and breastfed for 1 1/2 years. Be has rarely gotten sick and when he does its a congested nose wich I give him Chestal-a homeopathic cough syrup by Boiron you find at walgreens or health food stores. Colic calm is homeopathic too for colic,gas,& refux. That is ar CVS or at coliccalm.com. My 2 1/2 year old just had the most mildest case of chickenpox. There is a book by an MD called Vaccine Alternatives: A guide for parents,  travelers, etc by Ervin Davis that helps with understanding more about vaccines and the diseases we are immunizing against as well as eating whole foods. Hope this opens your eyes a little and gives the moms the confidence to follow your gut when deciding the best for your baby b/c the doctors don.t always know - what is best for U.

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