A Little Favor

12.02.2010
Violet is going to the pediatrician today and we are finally (I think I hope) going to get a chance to really hash things out and get some questions answered. Each time we took her in previously it was either for a sick visit that we couldn't get until late in the evening, or a 'well'-visit (her six-month), and it always felt really rushed.


Finally we have a visit scheduled at a decent hour and specifically for this issue. After the doctor saw her growth chart (she has slowly slid down from the 96th to the 9th percentile in weight over the months) she was really concerned. We were told to supplement with a hypoallergenic formula in between feedings (Similac Alimentum), but V wants nothing to do with it. I don't think the weight issue is an lack of intake, as my supply is fine and we nurse constantly - she pretty much has an unlimited access pass to the boob 24/7. Rather, her weight issues in my non-medical-professional opinion are due to diarrhea and vomiting.

[V and her Grammy]

The Hubster and I believe that she is allergic to dairy, rice, and possibly soy. Since deducing this and changing my diet to be dairy/rice/soy-free V has been a different baby. No small feat let me tell you - I am a cheese and butter queen, PLUS it's the season of mashed potatoes and pie. And soy? Soy seems to be in EVERYTHING.  But it's been totally worth it. Instead of 7-9 poops a day we are down to 2-4. And they smell like a normal breast-fed baby's diapers should - which is hardly at all (as opposed to one whose stench could fill the entire H-Haus). She is also sooo much less fussy. I can leave her in her exersaucer and get a whole sink-full of dishes done. Miraculous. I had always wondered how other moms kept such tidy houses...

A lot of people are surprised about the rice thing, as it's supposed to be one of the least allergenic foods, but we think V has something called Food Protein-Induced Enterocolitis Syndrome, or FPIES. It's fairly rare, but she fits the symptoms - a delayed allergic reaction to certain food proteins that causes violent vomiting and diarrhea. It's usually about two hours after eating one of the offending foods that V gets sick. AND rice is one of the big triggers (along with dairy, soy, and sometimes poultry, beans, legumes and more). We don't have a formal diagnosis yet - it's just our theory for now, but we go to see an allergist and a GI specialist soon, so hopefully they will know more.

Anyway, about that favor. V had to get blood drawn on Tuesday and it was traumatic - for her and for me. They needed three tubes but were only able to get 2 and a bit from her wee arm. Please keep your fingers crossed that it was enough, because I don't know if I can let anyone else dig around in her arm with a needle until they find a tiny vein again. Thanks so much!


14 comments:

  1. I'll keep my fingers crossed for Violet. Our son had a slight allergic reaction (rash) to rice cereal too, he was fine with oatmeal and our pedi was surprised too. We also had to have blood drawn, 2 viles, at 6 weeks old. That was the longest minute of my life. I understand how traumatic it must have been for you and and little V, hopefully you wont have to go through it again. I hope you get some answers soon!

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  2. Oh man, I really wish a good appointment, sounds weird though, and to find out what is up with your little girl.
    Big beautiful eyes she has!
    Great that you could already see changes just by finding things out yourself... on the other side...mums gut instinct, isn't?

    Feeding formula, what type ever, is never a real help... I think they just say it as a "quick answer that sounds reasonable"! If you are breatsfeeding and milk is flowing, bottle is not necessary!
    (but that is a different topic)
    So... good luck and let us know!
    Must be hard to see your little one not well...
    HUGS from amsterdam

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  3. Thinking about V and hoping things get better for her!

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  4. Just said a prayer for your family! Hope you get some answers at the pediatrician's office.

    Changing your diet is SO hard. I gave up all dairy for about 4 months when I was breastfeeding since even a little tiny bit made Alethea very gassy/fussy. During that time a friend gave me a super creamy and delicious recipe for coconut milk ice cream that is dairy/soy/rice free. (I fed it to my family without telling anyone what it was and no one even realized it didn't have dairy in it.) If you're interested, leave me a comment on my blog and I'll put the recipe in a post.

    Anyway, keep us posted on how the Dr's visit goes and remember there are lots of people pulling for you all!

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  5. ahhh that is so stressful -- hoping for success for you guys!

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  6. Thanks for the sweet comments! The appointment didn't go exactly as I anticipated - still felt a bit rushed and the doctor "didn't have time" to look over the information that I had taken in ahead of time about Violet. It seems that she wants the specialists to deal with it.

    They also didn't get all of the lab results back yet, so we don't know about the blood work.

    On the positive side - V has gained some weight back! Here's hoping it continues and that the specialists have more time and answers for us.

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  7. Prayers!

    Make sure you ask your doc what growth chart they are using! Most docs use formula growth charts, which aren't accurate for breastfed babies!!

    Emily

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  8. I'll be praying for you.It seems with my oldest that I was permanently in the Hospital (septicemia @ 10 days old, Severe allergic reaction to Sulfa, cuts, stitches). With him I had to literally do like an octopus and grab him with my arms and legs so they could drain the blood, not fun but necesary.
    I hope she does much better from now on; sometimes we parents have to go with our instinct.

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  9. Hope you find a doctor you are comfortable with to help ease your worries and provide some guidance. I know that dairy allergies can be intense. I am praying you'll get it all figured out soon. She's a real cutie.

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  10. We had a similar situation...My little girl was constantly spitting up and had the same poop issues as Violet. I tried eliminating milk/soy for a few months, but was never able to really figure out what it was. I went to 3 doctors and they all told me she was fine. She eventually just grew out of it (though she still spits up on occasion). I really hope you get an answer! I sure wish I had!

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  11. Wow, this is a lot for you and Violet to be going through! You are a good mom! I can't imagine having to restrict my diet of all those good things...more props to ya, sister! And good detective work. Poor thing getting blood drawn. Good luck!

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  12. I had to give up dairy for the past 5 months because of baby's sensitivity to it. I can't imagine giving up soy, too. It is in everything! I hope you get better attention from the specialist. Sometimes it seems like we have to solve these issues for ourselves because doctors either don't know or don't want to spend the time figuring it out. It's so annoying. My doctor poo-pooed the idea of my daughter's dairy sensitivity. As a mom, I knew something was wrong. I'll be praying for you all.

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  13. I'm sorry you're having to go through this. Eva has a diary sensitivity and use to have the worst screaming gas pains, green poo etc before I gave up eating diary.

    For the longest time people kept telling me it was normal and sometimes babies just cry, but I knew that there was something wrong. After researching her symptoms, I worked out it was diary and our doctor conformed it.

    I hope that you get conformation and some relief for little Violet soon.

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