P. had an appointment with the GP this morning in an attempt to sort out her possible GERD issues. GERD. GERD. Sorry. Anyway, a little history. P. was born weighing 5lbs 14 1/2 ozs and at her lowest weight went down to 5lbs 9 ozs. She is three months old on Thursday, and as of a week ago today, weighed 8lbs 9 ozs. At first, three pounds in almost three months seemed ok to me, until I realised that a lot of the babies in our mums and babies group have gained much more than that in a lot less time. The youngest baby is 6 weeks old and still weighs more than she does despite a birth weight of about 6 1/2lbs. I was browsing through blogs the other day and came across a 4 month old that weighs 21lbs! Shit. It's really odd to think that my child is just a month younger and yet weighs more than 12lbs less. P. gets weighed every two weeks due to the weight gain issues and her relative prematurity, and she only gained 3 ozs in the last two week period.
As far as the spitting up...well, it could hardly be referred to as such. I think it's more of a massive expulsion of stomach contents at regular intervals. Not only does P. throw up a lot of food right after eating, but she continues to expel liquid until her next feed when the cycle starts all over again. The poor kid has never even slept in her crib, and the Moses Basket has been rendered unusable for at least the past month. I have done all of the recommended things for babies with reflux problems: propped up the flat sleeping surfaces so they are at an angle, burped her during feeds, ensured that she is upright for at least 45 minutes after a feed, and anything else you can think of. None of it has even diminished the problem.
I went to today's appointment preparing for battle - GERD symptoms at the ready, just-fed baby ready to show the GP just how much she throws up, and the temperment of a person who is in no mood to be disregarded. I have told the Health Visitor and midwife multiple times that I suspected a reflux issue, and I have been to see the GP about it three times since P. was born. Last time the Health Visitor said, "I don't see it as much of a problem. It's not like she's losing weight." Uh, so do babies not need to gain weight now? They can stay at the same weight forever? Of course! Up to this stage they told me what I already knew. They brushed me off with the whole "Babies throw up!" piece of wisdom, which can go right along with, "Babies cry!" in the things I like to call, "Trite cliches people say that make you want to eviscerate them". Attempting to convince them that the amount she threw up was certainly not normal was fruitless.
I thought an argument was inevitable today when the GP seemed to imply that nothing was wrong with P. and that some infants just have reflux. Her perception seemed to be that I thought P. would need blood tests and an examination, and come to think of it, I should have shouted, "GERD!" as soon as I walked in the door so she knew what I was getting at from the outset. Since I thought the conversation was going in the direction of yet again no action taken to get rid of this problem, I started rattling off P.'s symptoms again and telling the GP that I was well-versed in GERD thanks to the internet. I'm sure doctors just love that. I imagine they instantly put up a wall when faced with the words, "I've been looking on the internet and..."
The GP eventually said the right things and will live to fill out more prescriptions. She prescribed Gaviscon Infant for P., which will be added to all of her bottles. As P.'s brilliant mama just found out, it obviously thickens the formula and as such the teats she has been using will not work. Heh. I had a very unhappy baby on my hands as I switched bottles and teats three times to find the right one. Teat. Teat. Teat.
In celebration of P.'s three month birthday as well as the hopeful alleviation of GERD symptoms, I present to you a happy Little Ms P.
GERD be gone!