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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2008 11:07 am 
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Joined: Tue Jul 01, 2008 7:26 pm
Posts: 28
Location: Vancouver, BC
Hi everyone! This is my first post and I just want to say how happy I am to have found this forum!

Has anyone dealt with food allergies as a (possible) cause for failure to thrive in a baby/child?

My baby girl is 6 months old and only 10 lbs. She is meeting all her developmental milestones but is growing very slowly and has terrible eczema. We had our first hint that allergies were at play when she had formula for the first time last month and reacted to it (vomitting and hives). She then reacted to Nutramigen a couple of weeks later. She has since tested positive for dairy, egg and soy allergies (skin test - blood test results are pending). So I've eliminated these from my diet to see if we see an improvement.

In my research I haven't really come across a similar case where allergens in breastmilk were impeding digestion to the point where FTT resulted. Does anyone have experience with this?

Thanks for reading!

_________________
6 year old son - eczema and sensitive skin
4 year old daughter - allergic to nuts, peanuts, sesame seeds, mustard and eggs; has outgrown allergies to wheat and legumes (by age 2) and to dairy, soy (by age 3.5).


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PostPosted: Sat Jul 05, 2008 6:05 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6455
Location: Ottawa
Glad that you've found us!

Sorry to hear about your little one's FTT. 10lbs is so tiny.

We didn't have a problem with this, dd was exclusively breastfed. We found out about her allergies when we tried to introduce dairy at 10 months. She did always have eczema until fully weaned.

I'm not sure if food allergies could cause the FTT but knowing about what to avoid has got to help the situation somewhat.

_________________
Moderator
Daughter: asthma, allergies to egg, milk, peanuts, tree nuts, most legumes (not soy) & penicillin. Developing hayfever type allergies.
Husband: no allergies
Me: allergies to some tree that flowers in May
Cat: allergic to beef, pork and lamb


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 07, 2008 11:18 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2005 4:04 pm
Posts: 2044
Location: Gatineau, Quebec
Hi there -

I'm happy that you have found the forum.

I was actually labelled FTT as a child (in the mid-60s), and it was because of an undiagnosed milk allergy. At the age of 17 months I weighed 11 lbs, and had stopped walking, talking, and even eating. I spent 2 weeks in the hospital, during which time they diagnosed my dairy allergy. They cut dairy (formula) from my diet, and I did a 180 after that - I was actually walking again when I left the hospital. But I think it was a very scary time for my parents. (Luckily I don't remember a thing.)

That is obviously a long time ago, but I do not see why food allergies could not be the cause of FTT. An allergen is like a toxin to the person who is allergic, and if you are putting toxins into a person, obviously it can be very harmful to them.

For me, it's not necessarily that the allergens in your breastmilk are impeding digestion. It's more that your child is (or was) being pumped full of toxins. It's good that you have completely eliminated her allergens to see if there is improvement.

It sounds like you need some expert help, and I hope that you are getting the help you need. Has your healthcare provider suggested other possible causes for why your child is so small?

K.

_________________
Karen, proud Mom of
- DS1 (12 yrs): allergic to cashews, pistachios, Brazil nuts, potatoes, some legumes, some fish, pumpkin seeds; OAS
- DS2 (1o yrs): ana. to dairy, eggs, peanuts; asthma


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 07, 2008 1:47 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jul 01, 2008 7:26 pm
Posts: 28
Location: Vancouver, BC
Susan and Karen - thank you very much for the warm welcome!

Karen - thank you for sharing your story. That is very interesting to me. Your perspective about the allergens being toxins is an angle I hadn't thought about.

My baby is being monitored by our family doc, a pediatrician and an allergist and is soon going to be meeting with an endocrinologist, so we've got all the bases covered. She had a bunch of blood tests last week (allergy + growth hormone + metabolism) so we should have more info soon. It seems like the first 6 months of her life were spent observing her and now all of a sudden everyone has kicked into gear and wants to figure out what is up.

She may well just be a small child, but at the very least its going to be that much harder to plump her up if she can't eat any of the stuff that kids like to eat!

_________________
6 year old son - eczema and sensitive skin
4 year old daughter - allergic to nuts, peanuts, sesame seeds, mustard and eggs; has outgrown allergies to wheat and legumes (by age 2) and to dairy, soy (by age 3.5).


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 08, 2008 11:18 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2005 4:04 pm
Posts: 2044
Location: Gatineau, Quebec
And funnily enough, I was thinking about what I wrote, and I realized that, because I am not a physician, I should not have said, "it's not necessarily that the allergens in your breastmilk are impeding digestion." Perhaps that is the cause... I don't have enough eduation to make a comment like that (my apologies)!

I hope the docs are able to help you figure it out. I'm glad that they have all kicked into high gear on this. It must be very worrisome.

At least you are not likely to be told that it's your fault because you are a "nervous mother". That is what my mother was told by our GP (in 1966). Or at least I hope you never get told that!!! She did not tell me that happened until I was in my 30s... I wanted to go back in time and give him a swift kick in the butt for that comment.

K.

_________________
Karen, proud Mom of
- DS1 (12 yrs): allergic to cashews, pistachios, Brazil nuts, potatoes, some legumes, some fish, pumpkin seeds; OAS
- DS2 (1o yrs): ana. to dairy, eggs, peanuts; asthma


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 28, 2008 3:12 pm 
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Joined: Tue Feb 05, 2008 11:22 am
Posts: 51
Location: Toronto, ON
Urmila,
My son was considered FTT between the ages of 18 months to 2.5 years when he hadn't gained an ounce during that period. He had already been diagnosed allergic to dairy, egg, fish and peanut. He was seeing about 3 doctors (allergist, nutritionist, gastroenterologist) at that time to try to figure out why he stopped growing and it wasn't until he had an anaphylactic reaction to inhaled soy that we realized he was allergic to soy.

The challenge was that when soy was ingested he wasn't analphylactic, he just didn't absorb his nutrients - we knew something was up because his stools were always abnormal - but his soy skin prick tests always came back negative. We removed soy from his diet (he was drinking soy milk) and sent him for RAST tests for soy and he came back very positive. As soon as the soy was eliminated from his diet his stools cleared up and he began to gain weight! Since then, his allergist has put him on Neocate which is an amino-acid formula for protein-allergic children which we mix with his rice milk to add protein and fat to his diet. Now he is doing super.

So, don't assume that all the allergens have been identified. Your daughter may still be reacting to something in the breast milk that is manifesting in an inability to properly absorb nutrients, causing the really slow growth rate.

Fiona

_________________
Son 7 yrs: Anaphylactic to eggs, milk, fish, peanuts, tree nuts and allergic to soy, animals & environmental + Asthma.
Daughter 9 yrs: No allergies!
Me: Allergic to animals & environmental.
Hubby: Allergic to deer, horse flies & bees.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 28, 2008 9:21 pm 
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Site Admin

Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6455
Location: Ottawa
Just re-reading this and I want to say that although our daughter did not have FTT, when I switched her from breast milk to soy miik (weaned her) she stopped growing-period.

This was a child who was in the 95th percentile height and weight who simply stopped growing.

I demanded that she see a dietician and this was an up hill battle as she was quite chubby (chipmunk cheeks run in my family). It turned out that she was deficient of fat by 7 teaspoons per day. There is a reason that the recomendation is for children under 2 years of age homogeonised milk and not 2%. They need the additional fat for the absorption of fat soluble vitamins and brain development.

Once I started adding oil to her soymilk (fine in Gerbers sippy cups but not Playtex-it makes the valves fall out), she started growing again.

I would ask to be referred to a registered dietician (anyone can call themselves a nutritionist but dieticians are certified) to see if there is a deficiency that could be at least a partial cause.

_________________
Moderator
Daughter: asthma, allergies to egg, milk, peanuts, tree nuts, most legumes (not soy) & penicillin. Developing hayfever type allergies.
Husband: no allergies
Me: allergies to some tree that flowers in May
Cat: allergic to beef, pork and lamb


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