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My 7 year old has had a stomach ache for two years

(63 Posts)
Imsolucky1983 Tue 03-Jan-17 22:47:22

I am at my wits end. My daughter started complaining of stomach ache and "sick" coming up her throat age 5. After a year of doctors visits I eventually went to a&e after being up for 8 hours with a screaming child. We were given a diagnosis of acid reflux. Gaviscon didn't help. Ranitidine helped about 50:/: we are now on lansoprosole which has helped about 75:/: but we are still having about 4 attacks of a "burning stinging" stomach a night, and about one episode of heartburn a day. My dd is now 7 and is so fed up, she asked me if she will feel ill forever sad we are under a consultant they have done an ultrasound of her stomach, tested for a bacterial infection with a stool sample and done a blood test. We see them again in a month. They are not overly concerned though. My dd is finding the pain so upsetting though she has even had to have a few days off school when she has been awake with the pain at night. She has said it's hard to concentrate on her work at school when the pain is really bad. She was even in pain on Christmas Day. I've noticed it is worse in the hours before she does a poo. We are currently trying a dairy free diet as her younger sister has cows milk protein intolerance but so far it has not made any difference. We have tried probiotics which help with her mild? constipation, although her ultrasound showed a lot of poo but they were not concerned. We have tried movicol but that seemed to make the pain worse. She has been tested for cealiac. We have taken her to a cranial osteopath. We have increased fruit veg fibre and water intake. We have tried gaviscon in conjunction with lansoprozole. I am at a loss. Does anyone have any experience of something similar? Or any ideas of other things we can try?

ferriswheel Tue 03-Jan-17 22:51:52

That sounds awful. I'm sorry I cant think of anything to do you haven't tried already. But keep trying. I hope you get it sorted soon.

SabrinaTheTeenageBitch Tue 03-Jan-17 22:53:14

Sorry I can't offer any help but in a similar situation with my 11 year old DD so watching with interest. It's awful

Tiniti Tue 03-Jan-17 22:57:22

My DS was very similar but vomiting a small amount up to ten times a day. We took him off gluten ( despite testing negative for coeliacs) and it stopped after two or three weeks. We then reintroduced it and he started up again. So now he has no wheat, fine with other gluten stuff. If he accidentally eats it he gets stomach pain and/or is sick.

I would do a complete exclusion diet and or FODMAP ask to see a dietitian

Hope she gets better poor baby

Imsolucky1983 Tue 03-Jan-17 22:57:33

Sabrina how long has your 11 year old felt unwell for? What do the doctors say? My doctors were useless and said children do get stomach aches, the consultant is of a similar view. They are not the ones that have to live with a sad child constantly complaining of being in pain though sad

Imsolucky1983 Tue 03-Jan-17 23:00:15

tiniti maybe I should try gluten free, my dd is a fussy eater I'm a bit worried there would be nothing left for her to eat! I will try anything though. What kind of things do you put in a packed lunch for school?

GinIsIn Tue 03-Jan-17 23:02:11

I am exactly the same as tiniti's DS - crippling stomach pain and vomiting if I eat wheat, but tested negative for coeliac.

Imsolucky1983 Tue 03-Jan-17 23:06:07

How long would she need to go wheat free for before noticing an improvement if it was that?

Kohi36 Tue 03-Jan-17 23:06:38

My 4 year old has acid reflux since birth. He was born very premature. We control it with a dairy and gluten free diet. He used to complain daily of a sore belly. We took gluten out of his diet and he never complains of sore belly anymore. We tried all the meds and osteopaths and chiro paths but diet is the only thing that worked.

Boredomismyenemy Tue 03-Jan-17 23:08:39

Do try gluten free, I tested negative for coeliacs but trial and error exclusion diet proved conclusively that I am intolerant to wheat. After suffering horrific indigestion and heartburn for years, amongst other symptoms, cutting out wheat has stopped it all.
There are so many great gluten free products available now that it's really not hard to give it a try and see if it makes a difference.

Boredomismyenemy Tue 03-Jan-17 23:09:40

Within 2 weeks I saw a massive improvement.

helensburgh Tue 03-Jan-17 23:11:50

You need to ask for a referral to a paediatrician gastroenterologist and ask for help.
I'd be thinking of eosinophilic oesophagitis.

Imsolucky1983 Tue 03-Jan-17 23:21:18

How do we get a referral? We currently see a pediatric consultant at the hospital.

Imsolucky1983 Tue 03-Jan-17 23:21:56

Also something worth noting is it gets really bad before she comes down with a cold or virus. Really really bad.

nut3lla Tue 03-Jan-17 23:22:49

My 5 year old had almost identical symptoms, sore tummies daily but thought he was just saying it he said so often. Tested for coeliac but came back negative. We also went gluten free and within 3 days he was amazingly better. 6 months before the lethargy, brain fog, moodiness we thought was just him disappeared. Bit of a parenting fail but we had gone to doctors several times and thought was anaemia. Interestingly my 2 year old did test positive for coeliac disease so I believe linked to this somehow. My DS takes a probiotic daily and avoids even the tiniest amounts of gluten. Completely symptom free as long as we do this but our doctor thinks I'm a bit of a fruit loop and nothing is wrong with him despite my protests. Good luck with finding a solution, This may or may not be it but go with what feels correct and if the medical profession don't know then don't give up - don't think this is common complaint so they just don't know.

OutandIn Tue 03-Jan-17 23:27:10

My DD had this last year for about 6 mths and was on 40mg of omeprazole daily. Investigation was: bloods, urine, poo sample, ultrasound, barium meal xray and we are on the list for a scope in the NY. She has a paeds gastroenterologist. She has got a lot better though since end Nov and we have reduced to 20mg and are not doing the scope now. I think there is a stress/ anxiety element - she is very competitive - is 8 yrs.

I would be pushing strongly for further tests. They should be aiming for pain free.

Imsolucky1983 Tue 03-Jan-17 23:39:39

It started when she started school. She is also a very anxious type since starting school. She doesn't like it when people get told off and finds the big class of 30 overwhelming. When I have helped out before I noticed she looks upset if anyone is naughty bless her. She was a reflux baby (breastfed) but after 6 weeks the constant nightime crying and projectile vomiting stopped.

TheFairyCaravan Tue 03-Jan-17 23:40:57

DS1 had something similar, he also had another condition. We were fobbed off for 3 years by doctors but DH is in the RAF so we were posted to a new area and our new GP referred us to a paediatric gastroenterologist.

He was quite cross that we had been left for so long. He arranged blood tests, booked DS1 in for an endoscopy the following week. When they put the camera down they found he had an ulcer in his stomach and his duodenum. He was started on some medication and 6 months later he had another endoscopy which showed the ulcers had cleared up.

He was 7 when he had all this done, he's 22 now and hasn't had any trouble since. These things are rare but they do happen .

Imsolucky1983 Tue 03-Jan-17 23:42:41

She was nearly 5 when starting school and quite mature socially and has a strong sense of what is right and wrong. She is very studious, I remember she was upset when some boys were play fighting and worried about it at bedtime. But then again she still has it in the school holidays, even on Christmas Day. She can be running round quite happy and then suddenly stop and scream that her tummy hurts.

Imsolucky1983 Tue 03-Jan-17 23:43:55

Also when she is coming down with a virus she can be in a really deep sleep but gets awoken by the stomach pain and screams.

Imsolucky1983 Tue 03-Jan-17 23:45:06

thefairycaravan an ulcer had crossed my mind. The consultant said they do not like to put children through tests though. It took us a year just to get a blood test for cealiac. Should I be pushing them?

Imsolucky1983 Tue 03-Jan-17 23:46:59

Thank you for all the replies everyone. It seems an intolerance to gluten is quite common! I will give gluten free a try, I will try anything. Any other stories or advice please post, I am seeing the consultant again at the end of January so the more ideas I have the better. I hate seeing dd in pain every day.

Twooter Tue 03-Jan-17 23:51:52

My DD had similar for about 5 months. It settled down when we put her on symprove, a probiotic, and cut her movicol down. It started with an impaction. She had loads of tests- all negative.

TheFairyCaravan Tue 03-Jan-17 23:53:34

I'd ask them to have a look with a scope. She's obviously feeling wretched and it's not fair on her. It's gone on too long, imo.

mawbroon Wed 04-Jan-17 00:05:16

Just to add another story.

DS1 was like this. When he was 6yo, I got to the root cause of it which was an undiagnosed posterior tongue tie. He was swallowing a lot of air when he chewed and swallowed because his tongue was unable to lift fully to complete the "correct" swallowing action. The air was coming back up and bringing stomach contents with it, so although technically not reflux, it had the same effect. He complained of a burning stomach and chest as well as being sick in his mouth a lot. Omeprazole helped a bit, but not very much.

He had an endoscopy which ruled out anything sinister, but did show irritation and some crystals in his oesophagus, so it definitely wasn't nothing.

We had his tongue tie released when he was around 6.5yo and the "reflux" stopped overnight, I kid you not. Within a fortnight, he had loads of energy and he's never complained of it since - he's 11 yo now.

He also had a rake of other things going on which were also related to his tongue tie and orofacial structure. He had a very high palate which restricted the space for his eustacian tubes and his nostrils. He had ENT problems, slept terribly from birth, snored badly, bouts of apnoea and mouth breathing to name a few of the difficulties and by age 7yo, even my untrained eye could see he was in for a load of orthodontic problems too.

You've only asked about the stomach pains, so I won't write an essay on how I dealt with the other problems, but if any of them are also familiar, I'm happy to expand.

Unfortunately, I was fobbed off by HCPs all over the place when I told them it was all related to his tongue tie. Mainstream HCPs are woefully underinformed about it. They spout "might affect speech and licking ice creams" but there is much, much, much more to it than that. I had to dig and dig until I found the information and help that I needed.

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