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loomis

Infant With Signs Of Malabsorption In Stools

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Hi

At age 9 months the doctor suggested that i start feeding my son a high fat diet so that he would gain more weight. He is now 12 months. He is still falling off the charts for weight (his rate of weight gain did not increase despite the high fat diet) and also now falling in length (he grew 1/2 a centimeter in length in three months). Our ped thinks it is too soon to order tests even though i have noticed greasy stools in my son.

I have a family history of cystic fibrosis and suspect my son might have celiacs disease or CF. He does not have any respitory symptoms though really so i am leaning strongly in favor of celiacs. After starting solids his stools became much more frequent. He usually has a bm at least 4 time per day and they always seem to be very soft. The first time i noticed anything that seemed out of the ordinary regarding his stools though was after he ate avocado and he had a grease stain that completely soaked through the diaper.

Be warned here is a stool description:

After eating avocado: a colorless grey stain which soaks into the diaper liner and even saturates it and appears as a grey stain on the outside of the diaper. Water does not do this. (I compared oil and water on the diapers) The stool has sort of shiny appearence and is very soft but does not stick to either the diaper or my little one's bum. Instead a greasy residue comes off babe's bum on the wipe and the stool just sort of peels off the diaper leaving behind the greasy stain. It also gets really flat (the stool) and thin like a pancake or something. The stool tends to spread out over the whole backside of the diaper. Sometimes, after eating other high fat foods, the grease stain is yellow or orange instead of grey but again it is a stain that soaks into the diaper liner instead of sitting on the top of the diaper liner. Sometimes the stool is in the back of the diaper but it looks like there is a grease stain between the leg openings of the diaper in addition to grease stains associated with the stool itself."

My doctor seems to think that my son's growth would be worse than it is if he was having a malabsorption problem. She also thinks that his stomach would be more bloated.

I know that in CF, malabsorption is caused by pancreatic insufficiency (ie a lack of digestive enzymes). I also know that in CFers breastfeeding aids in absorption because the breastmilk contains enzymes that hydrolyze fats so sometimes breastfed kids with CF don't have dramatic declines in weight and growth until after they stop breastfeeding. My son, eats alot of solids but also still breastfeeds alot (at least 3 times a night plus at least every two hours during the day.) I am wondering if my son had celiacs would he be able to absorb nutrients from breastmilk due to the fact that breastmilk is so easily digestable??? Or would intestinal inflammation impair his ability to absorb any nutrients from breastmilk too?

have any other parents here breastfed their babies with celiacs and noticed benefits because of it (such as less bloating, etc)

Thanks so much!!

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you can do a test to rule out CF, which would probably help to put your mind at ease on that. you could also ask your doc to do a stool test to check for malabsorption. the tests for celiac would not be accurate at such a young age. have you tried eliminating all gluten out of your own diet to see if it makes a difference in your child? if you are not consuming any gluten and you do not feed your babe any gluten, you should be able to see a positive change in your child if he has celiac.


Christine

15 year old twins with celiac, diagnosed dec. 2005

11 year old daughter with celiac diagnosed dec 2005

17 year old son with celiac gene

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Your description of your son's stools and growth history is identical to my son's! He is now 16 months and has fallen off the charts. Ever since he started solids and stopped breastfeeding, his stools have been super soft and like 4 times a day. It goes all over the place, too. In fact, we were starting to just toss him in the bath to wash him off instead of using a million wipes. Like your son, mine doesn't have a large tummy, but that doesn't mean it isn't celiac. If he doesn't have sweaty, salty skin and respiratory issues, I wouldn't lean toward CF necessarily. I pray it is celiac! Ask your doc for a sweat test to be sure.

Oh, btw, we started my son on a gluten-free diet last week and his stools are solid again. You may want to do testing before you start, but the diet should tell you something. We had positive bloodwork, but didn't want to give him a biopsy, so we just started the diet. So far so good.

Good luck!! :)

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Your description of your son's stools and growth history is identical to my son's! He is now 16 months and has fallen off the charts. Ever since he started solids and stopped breastfeeding, his stools have been super soft and like 4 times a day. It goes all over the place, too. In fact, we were starting to just toss him in the bath to wash him off instead of using a million wipes. Like your son, mine doesn't have a large tummy, but that doesn't mean it isn't celiac. If he doesn't have sweaty, salty skin and respiratory issues, I wouldn't lean toward CF necessarily. I pray it is celiac! Ask your doc for a sweat test to be sure.

Oh, btw, we started my son on a gluten-free diet last week and his stools are solid again. You may want to do testing before you start, but the diet should tell you something. We had positive bloodwork, but didn't want to give him a biopsy, so we just started the diet. So far so good.

Good luck!! :)

Hi thanks so much for your reply! It is so inspiring to hear that your son has improved after just a week of the gluten free diet! I am thinking we'll try it too. my son does not taste very salty so i'm hoping for celiac's or for the fact that i'm just imagining things! (but i don't want to be called crazy either) Thanks again for the response. I'd love to hear more experiences if anyone wants to share.

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Hi there, just wanted to send you some good wishes! My daughter has been labeled failure to thrive and has always been a very fussy baby. She is 11 months now. Does your baby have any other reactions to food besides his stools? My daughter never had diarrhea and actually after starting solids had pretty hard BMs BUT she would vomit every few minutes until there was only bile after eating a few different foods. Long story but we decided to try her on a gluten free diet and things have improved greatly. Her mood is better and she is actually up to 16 lbs I think! She is still short but I didn't go gluten free myself so that might be what is holding her back. I'm trying really hard to be gluten-free as of yesterday. She is only BF about 3-4 times in a 24 hour period but I guess even that can be detrimental if I'm not gluten-free.

She was also tested for CF as was my son a year or so ago. It is a very simple test and not invasive at all. We did some blood work for Celiac that came back negative but we are keeping her gluten-free for the forseeable future as she is doing so well.

I hope you get some answers soon.

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Did any other parents notice greasy stools in their babies (who eat solids) or toddler as a sign of celiacs disease?

You can see my description above if you need a graphic description.

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loomis,

I don't have children but wanted to welcome you to the board! We hope you will find a lot of good information here.

You could have your child tested for Celiac Disease (celiac-without the 's') by bloodwork, but young children who have it don't necesarrily always test positive for it. But it might be worth a shot. Make sure you have the FULL Celiac panel run---many doctors only run part of it. you can find it listed on a Celiac expert's webpage: www.celiaccenter.org and click on FAQs.

Good luck! Let us know what we can do to help!

Laura

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hi everyone,

I am just posting to say that my son has been gluten free since sunday and i have been gluten free since yesterday.

Prior to this, my son ate very little gluten anyway. Maybe three times a week at the most he would eat a few cheerios, a small amt of bread or a teething biscuit containing gluten. I was trying to keep wheat out of his diet anyway but occasionally caved and gave him small amts. Does anyone know how long i should go gluten free before i expect to see results?

thanks very much

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It can vary from child to child, adult to adult, just like the symptoms vary. Some see instant results, some see gradual results, some don't see any changes and then, wa la! they do!

I wish I could give you a more definitive answer. I would say a few months before you can determine if it is working (if you don't see results *right* away). It will be important to have him as close to 100% gluten-free as possible to see results. If I get glutened, and I've been gluten-free for 2.5 years, its like its started all over....

Good luck! Hang in there!!!!!!!

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