Eating habits of a preemie...help!

Calista - posted on 04/16/2009 ( 7 moms have responded )

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My daughter was born at 24 wks and weighed 1 lb. 2 oz. She has been at home now for almost one year. She weighed 15 lbs. 10 oz. yesterday at the doctor's visit. The doctor said that she is a little behind on the growth chart (which she always has been) so he put her on a med that is used for allergies or loss of appetite but the side effects are crazy! Its called Cyproheptadine. I have to give it to her 3 times a day. I tried the first dose this morning and then she wouldn't even take her bottle! He did say also that there's a chance she would end up with a feeding tube but its last resort. I just don't understand because she eats good not just big quantities. Anyone else have a child going through the weight issue and if so how do you cope?

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Mayra - posted on 04/19/2009

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Just wanted to give you a sign of hope! My son was born at 24wks 1 lb. 6 oz he too went through a lot his first year, he was a diaretics and on oxegyn when he came home. I was told he would be small and very thin because of all the things he went through. He also went through eye lazer surgery and wears glasses, he also had chronic lung disease. He is now 4yrs old and is a tough, stong little boy and eats everything in sight and is bigger and taller than a lot of his class mates, and im only 5'3! So what i want to tell you is to stay positive and strong keep doing what your doing and they will grow out of it, but they will do it at there own pace. You will run into some tough times but it does get better and every day you will notice the changes and youll see the progress!

Robyn - posted on 04/19/2009

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hey there! Wow, 24 weeks, that's incredible. what a mircale. so sorry you are going through all this. I know how you feel. My twins were born at 27 weeks - Morgan weighed 410grams and Konnor 720grams. Morgan had severe growth restriction as she had hardly any amniotic fluid in her sack. my twins are currently 19 months - Morgan weighs around 6kg and Konnor around 9kg. Morgan was nearly had a gastrostomy tube inserted as she refused to take her bottle but with the help of my physio we managed to get her to feed (she had an aversion to anything coming near her mouth). she came home on oxygen after 6 months of being in ICU. she did drink her bottles but both her and Konnor could never manage more than 150 maaaybe 180ml at a time. but they were comfortable on 120mls of milk up until 17months and then no more milk. we had to start solids early due to them not drinking enough milk. they ended up eating well on solids (we struggled with Morgan in the beginning) but, as it is with most preemies, they just don't pick up weight as easily as a full term child. this is just the preemie way. Our doctors, both of whom are micro prem specialists, have not prescribed any meds, and may or may not administer growth hormone at a much later stage. Mmmmmm I think you should go for a 2nd opinion especially with a paed that has experience with prems ESPECIALLY a 24 weeker. the medication sounds especially hectic...it shouldn't be putting her off her food. how are her solids going?

Chantal - posted on 04/19/2009

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Did the Dr do any tests to see if she was actually missing out on anything? There are mums at our playgroup with smaller than average children, but they are healthy, just small.

Nicole - posted on 04/18/2009

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WOW! I would really reconsider this medication. If she is eating just not in hge amounts it doesn't seem like there is a reason for it. I guess I am wondering why your doctor wouldn't have you supplement you child with a protein or vitamin?? Seems a bit over the top.....

Liz - posted on 04/17/2009

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You might want to concider the formulas that have extra calories and talk to your pediatrician about it. My twins were born at 33 weeks six days, and my daughter had weight gain problems. She was discharged at four pounds 1 ounce and three days later at their new born check up she was almost six pounds. Enfamil and Similac both have them. Now at nearly 10 and a half months my daughter is almost 19 pounds and my son is almost 20 pounds. He was discharged at four pounds 8 ounces.

Jennifer - posted on 04/16/2009

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What growth chart is he using? If it's not adjusted for being preemie then it's a ridiculous compairison. Also is she gaining at all? If she is consistanly gaining then I would question what the problem is, since you say she eats. Whan you say she's been home a year, that means she is at least a year old, and even with adjusted age around one year??? Is she eating any solids? Are you doing formula or breast milk? My son had eating problems, he had a sensitive gag reflex and so always threw up more then he kept down. But he gained weight consistanly and stayed healthy. He was a 29wker born at 3lbs 2oz. At one year he was only around 19lbs. Now at almost three he is only about 25/28 pds. Being "underweight" is a given for a preemie until they are much older, so most peditritions concentrate on consistant weight gain, and nutrition.

MiRYAM - posted on 04/16/2009

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Ask for a fortifier powder that will help I pump for 6 months because they have trouble breasfeeding at the beginning for two months they add fortifier to my milk and then they saw my milk was very rich so we stop, but you shouls ask for.

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