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What the hell is this? <wails> Please help... starting to lose the plot with baby's skin...

(34 Posts)
EachPeachPearMum Sat 08-Aug-09 20:18:10

DS, 6mo, has had 'eczema' for 4 months or so. It started off as very dry skin, and has progressed to the classic little red dots type- ankles, backs of knees, sideburns, wrists, neck/jowls- we use diprobase or diprol and it keeps it at bay, but never goes away IYSWIM. It hasn't been bad enough for hydrocortisone in the last month, but we have used it before.

It's just when he's pooed... sad

So, after poo- even 1 minute after pooing - in nappy area the skin is bright livid red, and has tiny white blisters- pretty much like nettle rash. Today his penis was all blistered and swollen up- sorry tmi- it looked exactly like the very hungry caterpillar when he's fat and has tummyache and makes his cocoon (!!!).

He doesn't have nappy rash generally. He does however have dry cracked skin around his nappy/tummy area- we use diprobase every change on that bit, and until this afternoon his tummy looked like almost normal baby skin. He frequently has dry, cracked, bleeding skin on his penis. He also has dry, scaly patches on his buttocks, but they are more like scarring from previous poos.

He is exclusively breast fed, so I have altered my diet to try and help his skin. When he was tiny, his nappies were awful- runny, foamy, stinky -I cut out milk which improved them, leading me to think he is CMP intolerant. His skin was still bad though, so I have been dairy-free for 5 weeks or so, which I think has made a difference. I notice he has flare-ups when I've had soya and coconut. Possibly egg too, but I need to test it again.

He has just started solids at 26 weeks.
So far has had:
Green Bean
Porridge (not oats- Plum Baby stuff- quinoa, rice, millet, amaranth, made with ebm)

Last time he had a poo, before starting solids, this happened, and after a day or so (using badger baby balm- has calendula and chamomile in, covered over by a thin layer of sudocreme) it cleared up, and his bottom/penis is normalish again. He does have dry scaly skin around his nappy/tummy area- we use diprobase every change on that bit, and until this afternoon his tummy looked like almost normal baby skin. He also has dry, scaly patches on his buttocks, but it's more like scarring from previous poos.

He has some cradlecap, not loads though, and he has a livid red storkmark which gets very scaly and I have to diprobase all the time, as he scratches it like mad... thats where he had impetigo, and it took about 6 weeks to clear up, mainly I think because babies spend a fair amount of time on the back of their head (he sleeps about 15 hours in 24).

My problem is I do not know what to do now! Does he just have really really sensitive skin? Or does he have some intolerance that I just haven't narrowed down and am still ingesting?

Just running out of ideas really sad sorry this is so long...

NorthernLurker Sat 08-Aug-09 20:25:01

That does sound very distressing sad It also does sound to me like there is something going on with food and drink that is impacting on his skin. I think you need specialist advice - have you asked your GP for a referral to the hospital?

EachPeachPearMum Sat 08-Aug-09 20:30:00

I have, but my GP doesn't think his eczema is bad enough to warrant a referral, particularly as the emollient keeps it under control... however I haven't told her about the poo-related stuff yet... am going to take him monday.

NorthernLurker Sat 08-Aug-09 20:35:18

I think you need to be firm and say I am concerned there is something else going on here please can we ask for a specialist opinion to put my mind at rest. You have a valid concern.

puffylovett Sat 08-Aug-09 20:35:31

Hi Eachpeach
I totally know where you're coming from, my DS had the same issues. He used to do vile poo's that would totally blister his bum. also pressure would cause eczema in specific areas, so he always had bad tummy eczema when he had loads of tummy time.

I usually found however, that it was either nightshade (potato / tomato) triggered, virus triggered (ALWAYS when he was poorly) or when he was significantly teething. It was awful. He would get huge white blisters surrounded by red skin.

I used to find the absolute best thing was the Weleda nappy cream, it calmed it down really quickly. I also used to leave him with his bum out a lot. Particularly if he was teething and doing acid poo's, I would smother him in calendula cream before his nappy went on so that he had a barrier cream on ready.

Personally with diet, I did an elimination diet at the same time as DS. I stupidly introduced wheat really early (you haven't done that though phew) but I did find it improved. I also used a probiotic supplement and a good strong fish oil, both of which helped tremendously. From time to time I used powdered vitamin C and liquid zinc as well, both of which are great for skin healing. Obviously we also removed triggers (the cats went as did all washing powder).

TBH I never did the double base route, I used all natural creams, the best I found was Vogels Neem Cream (just not on the face) and when he was 18 months old we started with homeopathic treatment which has done the trick, though some people on here are totally anti homeopathy (not sure if you're one of them, but it's really worked well for us)

I hope some of that helps, I really feel for you ! I feel like I have battled with his eczema for the last 2 years, he's now finally clear thank god but DC2 due anyday and I'm dreading possibly having to go through the whole process. However, forewarned is forearmed !!

puffylovett Sat 08-Aug-09 20:37:03

PS I insisted on a referral to eczema clinic and to a paed for allergy testing, not that it showed anything (the paed and I didn't expect it to but I had clearly already identified milk and wheat as issues - the problem is the tests just aren't reliable at 6 months)

EachPeachPearMum Sat 08-Aug-09 20:52:08

Thankyou Puffy. May I ask what pro-biotics and fish oil you used? (am I right- these were for you, to be passed through bm?
I haven't heard of vogels either, so shall look for that.

DC2 may have none of the same things though- this is my DC2, and his sister has no food issues whatsoever (thank goodness, as she eats like a horse!)

puffylovett Sat 08-Aug-09 21:25:11

Hi - no I gave him them direct - I used either Nutri Ultraprobioplex or Solgar ABCDophilus for the probiotic, and Nutri Eskimo Oil for the fish oil. He used to get pinned down and syringed in, poor child. I found the fish oil particularly helped, it's an amazing anti inflammatory. Dry skin is often a sign of a deficiency in EFAs. Great for their brain development too wink

I did take them myself as well, to be passed through bm - but I've read some research that says probiotics taken maternally don't actually get through into the milk.

EachPeachPearMum Sun 09-Aug-09 16:11:08's all up on his face today too... the only new thing he tried yesterday was courgette...

are they in the nightshade family?

foxinsocks Sun 09-Aug-09 16:17:36

I'd be careful assuming it's one thing tbh

what can happen, especially in those with sensitive skin, is that they have one reaction that lasts several days and then small things make it worse (so it may just be that he had a new food iyswim rather than it being a new food he's allergic to).

I would completely slow down on the weaning now. Don't introduce more than one new food a week. Give his skin time to heal in between.

Dd was milk, soya and egg allergic. I think they quite often come hand in hand. She ended up on a specialist formula because her eczema was awful and I was going back to work and I must be honest, her skin really improved after having it (but it's vile stuff compared to breastmilk!).

Are you cooking with breastmilk?

foxinsocks Sun 09-Aug-09 16:20:24

the nappy situation is very familiar to me

dd's nappies were absymal and her skin round her bits made me want to cry - but with her, it all appeared to be allergy related and once we sorted out her food, this did improve dramatically.

(however, she does still have sensitive skin and eczema but it is pretty much under control)

kieranandalexsmummy Sun 09-Aug-09 16:33:13

can i just recommend rosehip oil for your little ones skin,we were advised to use it on our little one while in the usa last year he has mild eczema on his face and it has made a huge difference

EachPeachPearMum Sun 09-Aug-09 21:42:57

fox- doesn't introducing 1 food a week get incredibly boring? I have given him potatoes and green beans for 2 days on the run this week, and felt a bit sorry for him!

as for 'cooking'... he's only had porridge, and yes, it was made with breastmilk- I'm dairy-free and soya-free too.

K&Amummy- where would one get rosehip oil? I haven't sen it anywhere (but I used to love rosehip syrup when I was a little girl! smile)

foxinsocks Sun 09-Aug-09 22:13:21

it's only one new food a week. So he can have everything he's fine with already (take out the courgette if you are worried) and just add new things slowly. Means it's far easier to pick up any allergies that way.

I would also go back to the GP about his nappy area (esp his penis) just in case he needs some antibs or anti fungals stuff. His skin sounds v sore there.

foxinsocks Sun 09-Aug-09 22:16:47

that's only if you are really worried about allergies, otherwise you can wean like normal. I just found it far easier to spot a potential problem if I knew a food was ok and then I could move on to the next one if that makes sense.

EachPeachPearMum Sun 09-Aug-09 22:27:09

Yes- completely smile I just hope there is a cause IYSWIM... I know some people just have it with no seeming cause, which would be terrible I feel... if I can narrow it down to certain things, at least I can keep them out of his diet.

His nappy area is almost clear again today... lots of bare bottom time, and baby balm... I photographed it to show gp blush as I'm sure they don't believe me because when we go he looks fine hmm

tatt Mon 10-Aug-09 08:33:19

Really difficult with eczema, a lot of it is trial and error.

Research on probiotics shows that babies have less allergies in the early years if the mother takes them during pregnancy and when breastfeeding. So a benefit gets through. A friend was told (by consultant in Nutritional medicine) it can take 12 weeks to restore a deficiency in fatty acids so don't expect immediate improvement with that one but they are important for skin. Flaxseed oil is a good source if you're concerned about introducing fish.

It's possible he has a problem with lactose (still in breast milk) so you could try giving him lactase for a few days and see if that makes any difference.

Of the foods you've introduced apple can be a bit acidic but nothing there to suggest a cause. You could try things like sweet potato, lamb, avocado that are low allergenic. Oats aren't usually a problem either, some in a bag when washing can be helpful for eczema too. It may be wise to introduce wheat before you stop breastfeeding. Good luck.

kieranandalexsmummy Mon 10-Aug-09 12:16:52

it took me ages to find it but i got it in holland and barett i should of gone there was quite expensive 15pnd for a very small droplet bottle

PinkTulips Mon 10-Aug-09 13:04:52

The eczema and violent nappy rash sound exactly like my older 2 dc's reactions to cows milk protein alright.

Have you tried cutting out wheat? That was another one that flared up dd's eczema.

Of the list you've posted potatoes are a known allergan and some people do find pears cause tummy trouble.

All three of mine had te stork mark at the back of the neck which seemed to be overlaid with eczema type skin, it faded at about 18 months/2 year with the older 2... ds2 has it still at 6 months and like your ds scratches it frantically.

Your best bet is to get a referral to paediatrics and have blood tests done and ask them to advice you on how best to continue.

Good luck, it's stressful but in a lot of cases allergies and intolerances they have as babies are out grown if you're careful smile

EachPeachPearMum Mon 10-Aug-09 21:53:06

pink... if I cut out wheat too I will be eating nothing! sad
I am finding no dairy, no soya so restrictive. I think I'll not give him potato again, but use sweet potato or butternut squash instead... however, he just had carrot and broccoli for lunch, and porridge for dinner blush- well he missed his breakfast as we were at gps, and I wasn't wasting that ebm!

we saw the gp this morning, and we have a referral to a childrens dermatologist.... we just have to wait 4 weeks now.

Thank you everyone for all your suggestions. smile

PinkTulips Tue 11-Aug-09 11:15:01

trust me i know, dd is cows milk and wheat intolerant and it is very restrictive smile

good luck with the dermatologist

pointydog Tue 11-Aug-09 11:24:52

good luck

happyathome Tue 11-Aug-09 11:55:02

hi,think you were on Jan 09 thread with me,was you?.my DS has ezcema too.i'm BF too's worrying exhausting,and just when you get rid it's back.good luck.i feel your pain!!.

EachPeachPearMum Tue 11-Aug-09 21:09:19

Hi HaH- yes, I'm a Jan 09er smile

Sheilsie Tue 11-Aug-09 21:11:22

Puffylovet, where did you buy the Nutri Eskimo Oil? I'm keen to try in on on my DD.

Very interesting re all the babies with stork marks on the back of their heads that they scratch frantically. I thought it was just my DD. Strangely, she doesn't seem to scratch much elsewhere, despite having severe eczema at times, but goes mad for the back of her head.

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