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16 Month Old - Failure To Thrive

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I have a 16 month old who weighed 7lbs. 13 oz at birth and now only weighs 18lbs. (She should have more than tripled her birth weight by now.) My family has a history of IBS, colitis, and colon cancer...I have reflux and recurrent diarreah and just a lot of unexplained stomach pains. My daughter since birth has had a severe wheat sensitivity. (along with milk, eggs, soy ect.) She grew out of everything except eggs and wheat. She does not have a wheat allergy according to testing. However, her sensitivity is so severe that while I was breast feeding, if I ate wheat she would have blood in her stool and scream for hours. At 15 mos. they did the antibody testing for Celiac disease and the IgA levels came back low. There was talk of immunodificiency disease. Tests will be repeated in a month or so. But, in my heart I know it's celiac. She has grooves in her tooth enamel that are not right, she has stomach pains, diarreah, and will just lay around with her blanky and suck her thumb for a large part of the day. I would appreciate any feedback that anybody can give to point me in the right direction on what I need to do to get a solid diagnosis. I have done gluten free off and on for 6 months and see some improvement...but I haven't been good at being very strict with the diet.

I have seen her pediatrician, and 2 different pediatric gastros. I really appreciate any info that can help my little girl stop suffering. Thanks in advance.


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Failure to thrive is a definite sign of celiac disease. The fact that you have two other common symptoms: stomach pains and diarrhea, makes it seem even more likely. celiac disease is often misdiagnosed as IBS, so that history of "IBS" could actually be a history of Celiac Disease. I think you might have it, and it seems likely that your daughter has it. A wheat "allergy" that doesn't show up in blood results as an "allergy" makes me think it might be gluten intolerance. Finally, an on and off, not strict, gluten-free diet will not necessarily help your symptoms. Therefore, to see any results you should be strictly adhering to it for an extended period of time. The negative bloodresults confuse me, but try bloodwork again, and if you want, run your own sort of test at home.....strict adherance to the diet....and see if she shows improvement


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My 3 y.o. daughter was recogized with failure to thrive. She, too, would lie around with her blankie rather than play and was always very calm on outings. Her tummy was getting big and she was screaming at everyone. She had a lot of gas and some rectal prolapse(I called it "the rose" when she had BM's, I had to push it back in)Her first doctor told me that children that age just stick their tummy out. I replied that her posture had not changed and why did she look malourished? He said he talked to other doctors and not much else could be done! I took her to another doctor about a month later after a shoe shopping trip-her feet had not changed size in 8 months. She did not have diarreah so her doctor was thinking tumors on adrenal glands. At that point I insisted she be referred to an endocrinologist. The lack of D was because she had Hashimoto's Thyroiditis(can cause constipation), which usually goes hand-in-hand with Celiac. Fortunately the endocrinologist ordered an IGA test that was very high, which was followed by a GI visit with positive biopsy. She now takes thyroid medicine, eats gluten-free and is a very active little girl. She has also grown a half inch and gained two pounds in the last six weeks!

I think it would be important to insist on at least these three tests:

antigliadin IgA and IgG (indicates gluten sensitivity)

anti-tTG and/or anti-endomysial (more specific to intestinal damage)

total serum IgA (rules out IgA deficiency)

I was recently diagnosed with IBS. I had to ask for a test. The doctor only did tTG-IGA which was negative and refused to do an IgG. I had to insist on a referral to a GI and my endoscopy report just states "chronic unspecified inflammation and no significant blunting of villi". I did eat gluten-free for over a week though and felt super!

Keep persisting, a mother knows when things are not right. This is an excellent place to gain knowledge for "ammunition"



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    • Ok, that was my understanding of it too after some reading, but the fact that the result was under "celiac reflex panel" is what confused me.    I do have some unspecified autoimmune activity going on in my body. My inflammation levels are very high, my complement testing has come back off, and nobody really knows why. A total high Iga isn't a surprise in this case if it doesn't actually hab anything to do with gluten. Going gluten free made my inflammation markers rise rather than go down, so I'm inclined to believe I'm mostly okay with gluten, aside from some digestive issues that I believe are simply from the wheat not being fermented. Sourdough causes me no issue,  but soft white bread destroys me for example. Anyways, It's all very confusing and I wish I knew what the heck was going on with my body. 
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