Friday, May 17, 2013

Poor Sick Joy

Joy has been SICK.  Two weeks ago, she caught a stomach bug and puked, and puked and puked for 5 days.  On top of that she has had diarrhea for almost a year now and it got worse with the sickness so several times a day I was bathing her and washing her crib sheets. (it has always been bad though, she can't go to bed with out plastic pants on over her diaper)

We took her to the doctor on the 4th day of throwing up because she had lost so much weight (3 pounds - which is a lot when you started out at 20!) At one point I was ready to take her to the hospital to get an IV of something because she was so out of it and skinny.  The doctor assured us it was just a bug and it would be over soon.  ($30 co-pay down the drain - as usual) I used the opportunity to once again bring up the fact that she's had diarrhea since she turned 1 and this doctor actually supported the idea that it might be a food allergy or intolerance. (but only after he prescribed Zantac and I pointed out that flaws in him prescribing that for her yet again.) We had her tested for food intolerances already when the problem first occurred but they all came back negative.  He said it is possible that there was a false negative and to try eliminating foods.

I started out with gluten but after a few more hours of research decided to try eliminating milk first because; 1. it's WAY easier to cut out lactose than it is gluten. 2.  It takes less time to see results. 3. I read that premature babies are more likely to be lactose intolerant. (which she is) 4.  I was lactose intolerant when I was her age - it caused the opposite problem for me so I never really thought it could be that. 5.  I REALLY wanted it to be lactose rather than gluten.  Like I said.... SO much easier to work around.

So, we started her on a non-dairy diet and have desperately been trying to get her to eat anything and everything that is high in fat and calories to gain weight.  I mix tablespoons of coconut oil in everything she eats and shove globs of peanut butter in her mouth when she's not suspecting. Avocados are one thing she actually likes and will eat willingly so that is good.

Two days into the diet, the diarrhea stopped.  Oh my goodness I almost cried I was so happy when her poop was in a neat clump in the diaper rather than a sauce dripping down her legs.  I was still doubtful because she doesn't drink a lot milk, the only time she has it is a little in her cereal and I found that the cheese we get is already lactose free so I was suspicious that it may be a dairy allergy rather than lactose intolerance.   I bought her some Lactaid milk and and she had that in her cereal, plus I made pudding out of it for her.  Sure enough, the next day the diarrhea was back along with crankiness and an extremely distended belly.  So, we are back to the dairy-free diet and although we have seen significant improvements in her mood and appetite, she is still having the same old diarrhea.   We plan to keep her completely dairy free for 2 weeks and see what happens. If there is no change we'll have to try gluten-free next.

Thank goodness we live by a Sprouts and Trader Joe's!   
Not many places sell coconut milk ice cream.
 She is back to her pre-sick weight now:)

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