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Possible reflux?? Ways to ease it?

(74 Posts)
ratbagcatbag Sat 13-Apr-13 01:38:21


Got a dd who's four weeks old, after every feed she's hiccuping and being sick and generally unsettled. Worst thing is I can get her to sleep sat up, or on her tummy on me, but the moment she lays on her back no matter how deep a sleep she's in, she wakes after about ten mins because she's been gurgling away with sick coming up, and you can here it all in the back of her throat sad
I raised the Moses basket with a few books but that seemed to make it worse as she can't spit out what's in her throat.
Anyone got any experience of this?

Kafri Sun 12-May-13 18:07:38


Not read every post but the OP defo rang true.

DS would only sleep upright on me or DH so we literally did shifts with him. Would not lie on his back at all - just screamed constantly in discomfort
I took him back and forth to GP who prescribed Gaviscon which seemed to help for a few days but then it crept back in and made him constipated which only added to our problems. Then tried Lactose free milk which again helped for a few days and then crept back in

GP then referred DS to hospital where we have a lovely consultant who prescribed Aptamil Pepti 1 milk for him (cows milk protein free) and Ranitdine. Again, he improved for a few days and then it all crept back in. By this point I was getting to the point where I wondered what I was thinking wanting a baby (which I felt awful about as we had wanted him for soooooo many years).

Back at the consultant, he wanted to try gaviscon WITH the ranitidine but listened to me when I said I was reluctant after the gaviscon had constipated him last time and he had ended up on Lactulose to get things moving again. So, he prescribed Omeprazole along with his Pepti 1 milk and, touch wood, we haven't looked back. He's 5m now and has had his dose increased a couple of times when the squealing started to return in the night. All I do is give the consultant's secretary a call and he returns my call after his clinic and increases his dose based on DS last weight check. I really cannot fault the staff we have seen.

The other thing is, which some people will flame me for I have no choice but to let DS sleep on his tummy. He has never yet spent a night on his back as he wakes within minutes of being put down. It took me a long while to accept this and for ages DH and I continued with shifts so that we could keep an eye on him sleeping but gradually I have accepted it a bit more. Don't get me wrong, I would prefer him to sleep on his back, as per guidelines, but he will not do it.

I really feel for anyone not having the same luck as I seemed to have with my GP/hospital. It really is a tough time until you get things under control. My GP did say to me that he didn't know the rules about prescribing formula vs buying it but when I spoke to the pharmacist, she said that yes you can buy it but that it is available on prescription and to get it on prescription because it's double the price of non specialist milks. I have tried to justify getting his milk free by donating the money I would have spent on his original cow and gate food to Ronald Macdonald house which helped my sister out when her little one was born and needed an operation straight away, they gave her a room to stay in so she could be with her DD

MiaowTheCat Sun 12-May-13 08:37:39

Both girls are technically prem - but DD2 was a whopping 7lb 36 weeker so I feel a fraud saying that. She's thrown up from the start thinking back - I remember buzzing several times in the hospital to query the colour of the throw-up and the sheer quantity of it and being fobbed off with "oooh some babies are a bit sicky" like I didn't have a clue what babies could output out of each bodily orifice.

Thankfully (although I was pissed off at the time that they did this with no notice to the parents at all) they've reorganised the health visitors locally meaning that I've got one who IS very assertive in pushing things forward at least... if needs be if the GPs continue being prats (they're normally very good but I guess budgets are biting) I'll go down to baby clinic and sob melodramatically and get her to kick their arses for me. (Old HV was very nicey nicey - but I told her from the point of my post hospital discharge visit that I suspected there was something wrong in at least the reflux department and she just did the "pat pat see how you go and we'll talk about it at her 6 week check" thing - considering I was still waiting for DD1's 9-12 month check to be done at 13 months from her... god help us!)

At least this one seems to be taking it a bit more seriously (and doesn't fucking call me "mum"!)

Managed to get her taking 1 scoop of it to 5 of her normal formula overnight at least... been told to increase it to 2:4 today and then 4:2 which I think might be a bit of an overly steep transition but we shall see.

ratbagcatbag Sat 11-May-13 23:45:02

Big hugs miaow, this is so tough, agree with cuddly, go to a and e if needed. sad

Cuddlydragon Sat 11-May-13 23:01:30

Miaowthecat I couldn't read and not say how sorry I am that things are so tough. I can only agree with Gurke, stuff, this treatment and HV/GP ping pong insist on a paed referral or even better, are you anywhere near a children's hospital? If so, go to A and E there try to time it to a feed. If you can and get help there. We tried Neocate it smells horrid but we didn't have any difficulties with it for a transient intolerance. The smaller they are the less of an issue the taste will be. Please try not to mess with feed sizes either. This is just so wrong of your GP. If you don't feel like you can go to A&E or push your GP, can your DH come with you to your GP. I found our truly crap ex GP took him more seriously with our little ones health. Good luck.

Gurke Sat 11-May-13 20:44:58

Miaow that all sounds bloody awful. I don't know how you're staying sane.

Suggestions from other people can be the most irritating thing when things are rough, can't they. But if it was me I would try to get my DH involved to take some of the burden off you. Is that feasible?

Also, I think you said elsewhere that your DD1 was prem - did you get to know a pediatrician you trust? I would try to get a referral asap - god knows you have the grounds to insist on that. This is going way beyond what HV and GPs can handle, even if they are otherwise ok (I loathe my GP, so this is my standard response anyway - but it really does seem totally warranted). Once you're seen by a pediatrician you don't have to play the HV-GP pingpong anymore and s/he can order all the tests you need and handle any further referrals to dieticians and allergy people etc.

Really hope you get some answers and solutions soon. Once the allergy tests are done you will be much wiser. Hold on in there!

MiaowTheCat Sat 11-May-13 16:46:03

No family around here, no friends (my one real one moved away) - finally succeeded in getting two cans of formula to try, but they'd said they'd set it up on the computer for me to get the remainder of the prescription if she would take the feed of this lot (they're REALLY getting me incredibly anxious about getting her to take this - plus now to add to the poor mite's bothers she's going to be miserable getting fed this stuff that's been built up to me to be so hideously traumatic to take that she never will)... but they haven't so I'm going to end up up and down to the GPs and pharmacy endlessly trying to get the remainder of the prescription if it works out - and I KNOW they'll then insist on an appointment with the doc, who'll tell me to go to the health visitor... and so on.

They've made me so stressed about how they're going to be over the cost of it as well that there's no way I can get away with making up the bottle sizes the HV told me to - they'll kick off and complain at me if I do - so I've got to pray she suddenly drops 2 oz off her feed size to get her onto what the can recommends.

Plus with everything we try seeming to be brilliant for a week or so then going back to being crap again - I'm not expecting anything to work and us just to have to put up with this until we can wean her... alternated with dreading weaning her if she IS allergic since the bulk of our cooking centres around dairy, and financially we're barely scraping by so can't afford masses of extra food costs - and she's got a sibling less than a year older than her so either it's a childhood of denying them both, or her having to be told she can't have the same as what her sister's having.

Oh and dreading in case they find an allergy to pets when they do the bloods - which I have to go all the way to the hospital I can't get parked at anymore since they're doing tonnes of building work - with a double buggy and a bus route that's a good 40 mins walk from the house for me since they pulled our local one.

To say I'm getting myself in a state about things is a bit of an understatement... just want her to be happy and giggly like her sister is - isntead of the only smiles we get being precursors to her throwing up all over us.

narmada Fri 10-May-13 22:19:53

Plus your baby is still v young and may well accept the neocate for that reason.

narmada Fri 10-May-13 22:09:39

Good god, you poor thing, that dounds awful. It's so obviously a feckin allergy, why are you primary HCPs being so bloody dense!!?!?

I think it is absolutely disgusting they are rrfusing to prescribe neocate in the quantities needed. You either need it or you don't. You wouldn't say to a diabetic patient that they could have some insulin, but only a bit, because it was too expensive, would you?!?!? I am so angry on your behalf.

Now, I won't lie, neocate is not ever so palatable but there are ways and means. Banana crusha syrup, golden syrup, splenda if you're not concerned about artificial sweeteners.... There are also more palatable, but more reactive, milks like aptamil pepti. Your baby might be able to tolerate those...

Hope things look up soon - is there anyone at all you can hand kids to for a few hours respite tomorrow?!

MiaowTheCat Fri 10-May-13 21:45:49

Bumping to see how people are getting on.

We went from bad to worse. DD2 developed a rash all over her face that's gradually spread and become quite scaly and upleasant - and would go redder when she was fed, and gradually calm down again over the few hours between feeds... still was uncomfortable, alternating between constipation and very liquid poos that flew straight out of the top of her nappy and up her back. Gaviscon made minimal difference, comfort milk reduced the discomfort somewhat but the rash continued to advance across her face, neck and shoulders.

HV was of the "why the hell are they giving you Gaviscon - oh well" half-finished train of thought brigade... so trotted back to the GP to be dismissed as a neurotic mother, have the rash dismissed as heat rash because it happened to be a hot day (despite booking the appointment a few days prior when it was pissing down with rain) and told to go back to the HVs.

So went and had to sit for 2 hours to see one after baby clinic because no one ever answers any of the HV phonelines. She then left a post-it for my own HV to call me... she called me... then called the dietician - whose opinion is it sounds like an allergy issue (especially with the asthma and eczema that runs in both families)... wants her on neocate (which HV helpfully and morale-boostingly described as "absolutely awful") and to have allergy bloods done. Was going to send fax to the GPs to tell them to do this.

Thought that would be it solved - however fax went AWOL at GPs and it's taken me sobbing on the phone to get it found and the prescription written before the close of play today. GP refused to prescribe the full amount specified by the dietician on cost grounds - so I'm getting the impression that if it DOES work I'll be having to beg for every single scoop. Ran out in torrential rain to pick up the prescription - pharmacy don't carry it in stock so got to go back out tomorrow to collect it.

Am now so stressed myself about this hideous formula that DD2 is never going to drink apparently and managing the transition over with the vomiting and what-not that's bound to happen while we change over, coupled with caring for my 13 month old on my own while hubby's at work until we get things under control that I'm an utter wreck myself... I already have an anxiety disorder - that's going completely mental, my eczema is going ballistic (stress triggered in my case) and the stammer I only ever have when really really wound up about something is doing my box in at the moment.

Poor DD2 looks almost like a burns victim in the hour or so after she's had a feed her face is so red and bumpy - it's heartbreaking and I finally succumbed to sobbing over it today. Had minimal sleep for the last few days as well as she's been so unsettled after her nighttime feed - course then she finally settles just before the alarm goes off and I'm laid there bleary eyed greeted with this little bundle snuggled up nice and warm and dozy - while I've had bog-all sleep - I swear she rubs it in sometimes... like splatting yourself out in a starfish shape when you're having an "Only comfy on your left boob" day - splatting out is just taunting me that I can't move a muscle.

Oh and smiling... which seems to be always followed by a nice vomit shower for me... and the squits which escaped the nappy and ended up absolutely all over me in the middle of Costa Coffee the other day... end of tether rapidly being reached. Texted my mother with how crap it all was this afternoon - and get some stupid fucking political comment about NHS cuts and how I should vote Labour in reply... so fuck all support from either side of grandparents (can't ask MIL - she'll just flip out and melodramatically sob at the state of DD2's skin).

Not good at all at the moment.

narmada Sat 27-Apr-13 13:15:49

Well then I am even more suspicious of a cow's milk issue.

MiaowTheCat Sat 27-Apr-13 06:27:00

I think the dry poo is just something she's prone to anyway that I don't want to make worse. She's done them from before we went onto the carobel sip they're not directly connected.

narmada Fri 26-Apr-13 22:09:01

The dry poos, btw, aren't usual for a young baby - they could be the result of the carobel but (at the risk of sounding like a stuck record) constipation can be a symptom of CMPI. Do you see any stringy bits of mucus in the poo at all?

I hope I didn't sound too negative there, about being stuck with months of drugs. It's just I have been there, twice, and I don't recommend it. It may be that it's just reflux pure and simple, in which case your doc can prescribe antacids (proper ones, not gaviscon) if he or she is so minded. Ours was happy to dish out omeprazole to our 3 week old shock and for that I wanted to kiss his feet grin. Most insist on it being done by a paed, which is probably for the best in the long run, but feels like another looooong wait in the process when you're in the thick of it.

narmada Fri 26-Apr-13 20:58:03

Don't waste your time with gaviscon if carobel hasn't worked - they have similar methods of action.

I agree it needs sorting, for everyone's sake - you don' t want to end up with feeding aversions - now that is truly stressful beyond words.

Really, honestly, do explore the milk allergy thing. It's not an airy-fairy thing in the imaginations of lentil-weavers, but an accepted clinical diagnosis. Otherwise you could have months of serious drugs like ranitidine and omeprazole on your hands.

Potterer Fri 26-Apr-13 20:52:16

Both my sons had reflux, ds1 just vomited with no pain, ds2 arched his back, took tiny feeds, screamed when lay down etc etc The HV didn't care because he was gaining weight but I was exhausted because he was hungry due to the tiny feeds so I fed him about 10 times a day!

With ds2 we had tried gaviscon but it didn't help, so we saw a paediatrician at Bupa who said he would want to try him on formula first rather than meds.

We were prescribed Enfamil AR (anti-reflux) which is a formula that thickens on contact with stomach acid so you can use the normal teat on the bottle ie it doesn't thicken in the bottle. See here

You can get it from a pharmacy (without a prescription) we got ours from Boots. They just ordered it in for us. We were fortunate that we were given it on prescription from the beginning.

I used a sling to carry ds2 around and to be completely honest, in the day he slept semi upright on me (I am a SAHM so this was a possibility) or in the pram if we were taking ds1 to preschool. His cot was propped for night time and the paediatrician told us to give him a dummy to help keep everything down.

We were told to try early weaning at 17 weeks with starchy stuff only like potato or sweet potato but that didn't work for us so we went with baby led weaning at 6 months.

Ds2 was on the Enfamil till he was 14 months old, we kept trying cow's milk but he didn't like it, ditto follow on milk.

I will tell you that he has finally stopped refluxing at age 7 years! It would only happen at night and only once a week or so. I hope this helps.

MiaowTheCat Fri 26-Apr-13 20:14:08

We're back at the docs for DD2's 6 week check on Tuesday and I feel we're (well probably me to be honest) going to be having to push for more.

We were told to try carobel - which had worked a bit we thought in terms of containing the waves of sick, but not in terms of reducing her discomfort much... but it seems to have got worse over the last week or so and during the day now we're getting a good wave of vomit after every feed again (you have to hold a muslin there to catch it as it all comes up) - it doesn't seem to be working well anymore.

Not sure where we should be pushing for - she doesn't scream (thankfully) but it's loads of squirming, back arching, grunting, rooting to suck for comfort (and of course she's a typical baby in that she hasn't associated pulling this interesting thing she's found by her mouth out with the indignation her dummy's gone) and the trails of watery acidy possetting are now being replaced by waves of sick up again. I don't think hubby realises how bad it is since most of that seems to happen during the day.

Do I try to push to try Gaviscon next? I'm really hesitant about that since she seems to be slightly prone to constipation and quite dry poos anyway. GP's line (hopefully the one I've asked to see this time is more helpful) is that if they're gaining weight they won't do anything - I'm already thinking I might have to push the fact it's having a detrimental effect on my mental health (it's not really but I've got a proven track record of anxiety/depression I could use for this) in order to get them to agree to act for her. They cannot have the line of leaving a baby like this for months - it's bloody immoral and it's dangerous to do in case a mother reaches breaking point over it all.

narmada Mon 22-Apr-13 23:56:32

When we finally got to see a paed btw, milk allergy was his first suggestion.

narmada Mon 22-Apr-13 23:55:21

Has milk allergy been ruled out?! Seriously, we had MONTHS of what you are describing and eventually the thing that helped most was changing to modified formula (not lactose-free, not comfort formula). Something like nutramigen or aptamil pepti.

You can buy it OTC in boots but may have to pre-order it in.

In meantime the best advice I have is sleep in shifts with your DP. He does 8 pm to 2 am awake, You do 2 am to 8 am or vice-versa.

Cuddlydragon Mon 22-Apr-13 11:42:36

Oh Ratbag. I've pm you. It's hard but you will fund a solution. I'd be asking for an emergency appointment today. It really is hard to fund the energy to keep pushing when you are so tired. You can though x

MiaowTheCat Mon 22-Apr-13 09:27:29

Sadly DD2 HATES the Moby! Annoying as hell since DD1 loved being worn and DD2's generally the more snuggly out of the pair of them.

Crap night last night - DD1 is teething incredibly slowly and badly so I ended up having her next to me (couldn't re-settle her cos we have separation anxiety and a shitty "I've heard about these terrible twos so I figured I'd make a head start on them" temper added to the mix), coupled with DD2 being incredibly hard to settle.

Pleasenomorepeppa Mon 22-Apr-13 08:09:38

Also try a stretchy wrap sling. It isn't so tight on her tummy & she seems to quite like it.

Pleasenomorepeppa Mon 22-Apr-13 08:05:03

Hi. Both by DD's had reflux. It's awful. DD1 was diagnosed at 4 months & we were given infant gaviscon. It was like a miracle!!
DD2 was diagnosed at 10 days as we were very aware of the symptoms (I also think my GP has recently had a refluxy baby himself so is more sympathetic & proactive this time!!).
She was on ranitidine but it really didn't work. Her reflux is quite high up in her throat so she finds feeding really hard. She's 3 months now & pretty much totally refuses to BF.
She's now on Omeprezole & aptimal Pepti. Gaviscon just made her v constipated.
We got referred to a Paed purely because by her 6 week check we'd been to the GP 4 times!!
She is also gaining weight.
Good luck & keep on at the GP smile.

DolomitesDonkey Mon 22-Apr-13 08:05:03

I get that. My husband had the snip less than 5 months after our reflux baby was born.

ratbagcatbag Mon 22-Apr-13 07:55:10

Haha Dolomites, DH is for the snip. tonight if I get my way I'm still here after zero sleep last night. Sweet pea swing workd as she's upright in it, tummy sleeping is getting massive consideration with a monitor.

DolomitesDonkey Mon 22-Apr-13 05:27:53

Just checking in to send you lots of love. I know there's nothing I can do from here but I just wanted to let you know that people do care and are thinking of you. x

It's hideous and shitty I know, but it WILL get better and then you'll forget and you'll find yourself idly contemplating another baby... and that's when you know you're over it! grin

We were told that if needed a small operation could be done on the bile duct but we didn't want to do that. The hospital did though offer to take him for a night so we could just sleep. We didn't take them up on the offer because we were terrified it would set off a klaxon over at social services - but we were very tempted!

ratbagcatbag Mon 22-Apr-13 01:00:44

Although I'm tempted to bid just for the sleep positioner smile

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