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Is Baby Lactose Intolerant or Having Milk Protein Allergy?

by Vanessa
(orange county )

I am not sure if my 3 month old is lactrose intolerant or has milk protein allergy. All I know is for the first month and a half I breastfed and supplimented with milk based formula. I cried with my baby every night and all day becuase he would cry and cramp up. I went to 2 doctors and they told me it was colic and nothing I could do.

Finally one doctor put it together, he had a massive rash on his face, he was crying all the time, cramping up after eating, and had diarrhea. I started him on Soy formula, not knowing all the downfalls to it, but it worked. Everything cleared up in ONE DAY! yes ! ONE DAY! It was a new baby.

I am not sure if my baby is lactose intolerant or if he has milk allergy, and I do not like the smell or the taste for my baby of the hyproallergy formula, smells like pure medicine. Is there a lactose free formula out there that migth be good? Again I am not sure if he is lactose intolerant or allergic to cow milk protein. How will I be able to know which it is?

And is there a few different formulas out here best to try? My dr recommended Enfamil Lacto free, but I can not find that it stores, and buying online is not for me when it comes to formula. thank you !

Baby Help Line:

How To Distinguish Between Lactose Intolerance and Milk Protein Allergy

First of all, kudos for not giving up, but continuing to seek second opinions to get a proper diagnosis for yor baby. Absolutely wonderful that the symptoms disappeared as soon as you switched to soy formula!

Is it lactose intolerance or milk protein allergy? It is a good question, since the symptoms are often very similar. A lot of what happened to your baby; the pain, crying, dirrhea, ar common in both cases. However, there are reasons to believe that your baby is allergic to milk protein rather than being lactose intolerant:

  • Symptoms of lactose intolerance rarely develop in people younger than 6 years of age. Before this age milk intolerance is more frequently due to milk-protein allergy.
  • Typically, babies younger than 6 months with milk-protein allergy develop diarrhea and eventually vomiting after several weeks of being fed with formula.
  • Your baby get rashes after consuming milk. This would suggest that your baby has milk-protein allergy, especially since the rashes disappeared when you took him off dairy. Rashes after milk consumption are associated with milk proteing allergy, not lactoe intolerance.

However you mentioned that your pediatrician suggested Enfamil LactoFree. Therefore, it seems to me that your doctor does not believe that your son has milk-protein allergy. As it is important for you to know which it is, I do think you should head back to the Doctor’s office and ask for clarification and testing. There isn’t one single lab test to check for milk allergy, but it can be done.

The only way to prevent the symptoms of milk-protein allergy is eliminating cow’s milk from the diet of your baby. If your baby does not have lactose intolerance, breastfeeding is the first option.

If your baby cannot be breastfed, you can use complete milk protein hydrolysate or amino-acid based formulas. Partially hydrolysate formulas should not be used in children with milk-protein allergy. Many babies that are allergic to cow’s milk-protein will develop soy protein intolerance if they are fed with soy-based formulas. For that reason, soy-based formulas is usually not recommended for children with milk-protein allergy.

I hope this helps,

Paula
(Answer approved by our Medical Reference Team)

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Comments

Dec 26, 2013

OMG YES!!!! Milk allergies are real!!

by: Anonymous


DO NOT GIVE UP..! When my son was born he had a milk and soy protein allergy… There was only 1 type of formula that was available for him during this time. Since I wasn’t crazy about the thought of formula I basically went on strike… I cut out all milk and soy protein out of my diet and breastfed my son… YES IT WAS VERY HARD, but I wanted the best for him. I alternated this formula when he was almost a year old and after he turned 14 months, we introduced whole milk. He eventually outgrew the milk and protein allergy but I chose to stick with Soy, Rice and Almond milk for most of his diet. SO, again don’t give up…Your baby is worth every sacrifice you have to make…Good luck


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