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Formula and bad skin - a link??

(50 Posts)
MrsFish Sun 13-Jan-08 08:22:03

Hi there

I was wondering if anyone had any experience of using formula and their lo's having really bad dry and red skin (not eczema, it doesn't seem to bother him, just looks bad) I started off using Aptamil which didn't agree with him stomach wise, so I changed to Cow and Gate comfort, but I can't remember whether his skin was bad before that now. I have tried Aveeno cream, diprobase, epaderm and now they have given me an Evening Primrose cream to try, all to no avail, nothing seems to help at all. I have recently started to wonder whether it could be anything to do with the formula, and until I can next see the HV thought I would ask here to see if anyone had had similar problems.

close up

all over

His back and bottom are clear funnily enough, its just all over his front, and he has a really dry face and scalp too.

Any help would be appreciated thanks

freefrommum Mon 19-Nov-12 09:14:13

Definitely looks like eczema although quite surprising he deosn't scratch. What did HV suggest it was if not eczema? My experience is that GPs and HVs are really not that great when it comes to dealing with eczema and allergies. I would push for a referral to a dermatologist. Don't be fobbed off, you are well within your rights to ask for a referral, especially as the HV doesn't appear to know what it is and all the creams you've tried haven't worked.

Lillyaan Mon 19-Nov-12 01:24:16

Looks more like an allergy and not at all like ecezema.
Might be the formula? Or-
Leaning towards a contact allergy
?Clothing = lanolan / wool garments or type of washing liquids used for clothing or bathing.
Some areas in the UK have 'Drop In Eczema' clinics, Your nearest Health Centre can advise if there is one or why not telephone the Aptimal or C&G Formula Reps ask their advice.

MrsFish Mon 21-Jan-08 07:17:23

Hi chickpea - I'm using the C&G Comfort, which suits his tummy, still not sure about the link with the skin and formula though, it seems the jury is still out. Once he is on food more I may try him on a totally different formula to see if it makes a difference. His skin does seem a bit better on this liquid paraffin though, its still red but the skin isn't as thick and dry as it was. I will see how he is on friday because he will have had a full week of it by then.

ChicPea Sun 20-Jan-08 23:43:22

MrsFish, I started a thread on the Allergies topic thinking that my ds age 8mths who had a rash on his face expecially under his eyes was allergic to Ecover. So I changed to Filetti. A friend suggested that it could be an allergy to dairy so I avoided giving him cheese and fromage frais but upped the advocado and butter beans to ensure he had enough protein etc. The rash did improve but not completely. Then a friend suggested it could be the formula as I changed from Cow and Gate Premium to Cow and Gate Follow On at 6mths which was exactly the same time as starting solids. So I went back to Premium about 10 days ago and his skin is so much better. My dh rang Cow and Gate and they said that there is a higher level of whey and casein in the follow on milk and that some babies react.

Hope you find whats bothering your little one. He looks gorgeous!

MrsFish Sun 20-Jan-08 07:49:01

Well 2 days in and I can see a slight improvement in his skin... his sleeping and feeding patterns on the other hand have reverted back to how he was in the first couple of weeks. hmm

meep Fri 18-Jan-08 16:34:39

I have used hydrocortisone on dd - when the patches behind her knees got particularly bad - it clears it up really quickly - the only thing to remember is not to stop using it once it has cleared up - you should continue with it for at least a week or it will come straight back.

Nice to know that your GP is not just sending you away with a tube immediately - but they only give 0.5% to babies so if you needto use it do not worry. We don't have to use ours any more

You might also want to think about 100% cotton clothes - a pain but it worked for my friend's ds

bluejelly Fri 18-Jan-08 15:07:06

My baby had this, cleared up by 2 years old though, but I still don't use any soaps or bubbles in the bath

amidaiwish Fri 18-Jan-08 15:02:35

i have never met a doctor who believes eczema and food/milk is related.

However the amount of mums i know with children with eczema - who all found it improved with a change of milk....

don't be too scared of the hydrocortisone by the way - just use it very sparingly on the worst patches to get over the worst and then hopefully you will hardly ever have to use it.

TheBlonde Fri 18-Jan-08 14:43:25

surcare is worth a try

MrsFish Fri 18-Jan-08 14:30:27

Thankyou all, especially the comments about my gorgeous boy Right I will leave out the fabric softener, I am already using non bio but will try a different make.

3andnomore Fri 18-Jan-08 13:26:05

It does look like Eczema, to me, too...
whatever it is though, I would avoid any Babybath, use some oats or some grapeseedoil in the bathwater instead of Babybath, keep using some sort of Emoillient cream, and it is very much of a trial and error which one suits an individual best, and use non bio Washingpowder and maybe avoid softener altogether (you could use a little white malt vinegar instead)....see if it makes a difference...because somehting is obviously upsetting your lil ones skin.
And I agree, he is utterly adorable

TheBlonde Fri 18-Jan-08 13:20:33

ask about the HC, it will clear it up much more quickly

Mommalove Fri 18-Jan-08 13:08:10

...Sorry, in a nutshell my point is: IMVHO GPs and HVs will often refuse to consider problems with cow's milk unless told it's a problem by a consultant hmm

Mommalove Fri 18-Jan-08 13:05:53

My ds1 had this type of skin which was labelled 'baby eczema' by doctor and HV - it went on until he was approx. 18 months old then cleared up. I bf him and suggested giving up dairy and the HV actually sniggered at the suggestion it could be anything to do with cow's milk.

As a new mum I thought 'trust the Health Professional's opinion' hmm.

Fast forward 6 years to ds2 and dd1 (twins), who both started to develop exactly the same skin... but also display other classic signs of cow's milk protein intolerance (gastrointestinal symptoms). So I cut out all dairy products and not only did the tummy problems go away, but so did the skin problems. I could honestly cry when I think of how poor ds1 used to scratch and bleed and it could have been fixed by taking dairy out of his diet (through my breast milk and then through his own diet when weaning). Sorry if this doesn't feel relevant to you but I had to post - I would not discount the possibility that it is a cow's milk sensitivity. Could you ask to trial a milk free formula?

Good luck, you have some good suggestions here re: mosturisers but I really would see if dairy free makes the difference.

MrsFish Fri 18-Jan-08 13:01:42

Thanks for your replies

meep - it just goes to show that if they are prone to it they will get it whichever way they are fed. DS glows red in the bath too, also when he has had a screaming fit and got himself all hot and bothered.

He has started to scratch now, as soon as I take the babygro off his hands are straight to his legs. Also he is never still, I just thought he was very active, in hindsight I think the reason he thrashes around so much is his way of itching himself.

TheBlonde - they are keeping the hydrocortisone as a last resort I think, it was mentioned but they wanted to try everything else first.

Jellies - I have emailed you.

Chipmonkey - I may look out for that once I start weaning.

I just hope he grows out of it, my ds1 had it to a far lesser extent he is now two and a half and it has practically gone apart from a few very small patches the size of sall fingernail.m

TheBlonde Fri 18-Jan-08 10:19:58

Just seen this
MrsFish your LO looks exactly like my first did at 3 mths (excl bf)
We used hydrocortisone cream which cleared it up quickly
Then we just used ollatum and diprobase to keep him moistured

jellies Fri 18-Jan-08 10:17:16

Mrs fish please email me jennymbrown@aol.com
re this thread!

meep Fri 18-Jan-08 10:05:20

MrsFish - what a cutie your ds is, even covered in the rash

Out of my antenatal group, 3 of our babies have the same sort of problem - one formula fed, one mixed fed, and the worst one exclusively breast fed. Out of the babies with perfect skin 2 have been formula fed from around 3 weeks!

I use Epaderm on my dd - if I didn't she would be all red and patchy like your ds. The red patches "glow" when she's in the bath, but normally she looks fine apart from behind her kneew. Her back has never been affected (nor mine - I have excema and I never get it on my back!) My only tip is to moisturise a lot - we use the Epaderm at least twice a day - and it took a few weeks for it to start getting really better.

Hope you find something that works for you.

chipmonkey Fri 18-Jan-08 09:50:50

Sorry, that was for MrsFish, not Bilbomum!

chipmonkey Fri 18-Jan-08 09:50:07

Bilbomum, my ds2 was exclusively bf until he was 4 months old. He was given one bottle of formula by his creche and came out in a patchy dry rash which my GP said was exzema. The formula had been given in error because the creche staff thought you couldn't heat breastmilk hmmand he wouldn't drink it cold. after that I tried to keep him exclusively on breastmilk but sometimes couldn't keep up with the expressing. I did find that his skin remained clear if I gave him Nanny formula which is goats milk based and didn't smell as awful as the soy based ones. Nanny was taken off the market in the UK as a baby formula but is still available in health food shops, just not labelled as a baby formula. It was taken off because apparently is not as nutritionally sound as "normal" formula but maybe might be worth trying when he is older and on solids?

Bilbomum Fri 18-Jan-08 09:27:43

Well at least you've got a diagnosis. It's horrible to deal with but usually improves as they get older. We were referred to hospital very early on which was a great help. We have special Comfi Fast vests and tights for our boy, you put a thick layer of gloop on the skin and the suits straight over the top and it keeps the skin hydrated for longer. He's been wearing them 24/7 for about 6 months now and they definitely help. It's a bit of a wrestling match to get them on but it gets easier. Good luck!

MrsFish Thu 17-Jan-08 19:53:13

Well saw the doc today and ahe said it was ezcema on his arms and legs but elsewhere it was just very dry skin. He should apparently grow out of it. My HV spoke to the childrens dermatologist at the hospital and she recommended liquid paraffin which I am now trying, if it hasn;t made any improvement in a week she is going to refer us to the hospital. She also said that she thought it was extremely unlikely to be anything to do with the formula, so did the doc. I may still try changing the washing powder though

MrsFish Tue 15-Jan-08 14:44:36

BibiThree - I am using Oilatum in the bath atm, may try the E45 one though

MrsFish Tue 15-Jan-08 14:43:17

Ina7 - I started with Aptamil, but he has been on Cow & Gate for weeks and weeks now, looks like they are all different but looks like it is still formula. I'll see what the doc says on thursday and if she suggests changing I will.

BibiThree Tue 15-Jan-08 13:16:28

DD1 had that too - sorry don't know if ff has anything to do with it but she had it until she was 2.5 so I doubt it was formula.

We were at the Drs every month for a new cream/lotion and the only thing that cleared her skin was E45 Bath Oil. She did need Hydrocortisone for the really bad parts but we were advised to bathe her as little as possible and when we did, to use the oil in the water. It was fab stuff. You can buy it in lloyds Pharmacy or Tesco if you can't get ot the Dr but it's not cheap.

Good luck.

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