Helping a 5 Mth Old With a Feeding Tube
I had a perfect pregnancy and an easy delivery. Our beautiful baby girl, Josie, was born on Sept. 5, 2012. A month after she was born we found out she had two minor holes in her heart (Atrial Septal Defect, Ventricular Septal Defect), as well we began to notice a decrease in feeding, inconsolable crying, gas pains, and a cough. I was at her pediatrician's office at least two times a week for four months, trying to figure out what was wrong. After various (and horrible) tests, she was diagnosed with severe reflux and colic. She was put on multiple medications.
By the end of December she was not thriving and had gone from about 12lbs. to just under 10lbs. I had tried everything, even eating a strict "colic" diet so I could continue to nurse. She refused to eat, wasn't sleeping well, still had a cough, cried all the time, and quickly became dehydrated. All of this led to an E.R. visit where she was given an I.V. for dehydration. Unfortunately my pediatrician did not handle her case very well, and within one week of her E.R. visit I took her to Primary Children's E.R. where she was immediately admitted for severe dehydration, severe reflux, colic, oral aversion due to reflux, and failure to thrive.
She had a wonderful team of doctors who eventually decided, with me, that a feeding tube along with an elemental formula would be in her best interest. She received a Nasogastric (NG) feeding tube, and within 48 hours of the new formula she began to improve. Fortunately, Josie's heart did not severely complicate her problems. Josie was also taken off all medications my pediatrician had prescribed, and she was put on Prilosec. We were in the hospital for eight days.
Though we saw improvement, Josie still cried a lot, was not sleeping for long periods, and still had severe reflux which often caused her to throw up feeds. According to Josie's Pediatric Gastroenterologist many studies are now showing antacids are not particularly effective for reflux in babies. So I began researching alternative treatment methods and came across many studies in favor of taking infants with reflux and colic to a Pediatric Chiropractor. This is how I found Dr. Bill.
My husband and I brought Josie to her first appointment, along with our five year old daughter. We were immediately impressed with Dr. Bill's family-friendly environment and wonderful staff. I could tell Dr. Bill was passionate about helping babies maintain great health and happiness. I appreciated that Dr. Bill listened to my thoughts and questions then gave very logical explanations and realistic answers. I could tell Dr. Bill was intelligent and knew what he was doing. I liked that Dr. Bill not only had a "Western" education, but an "Eastern" education as well. Some of Dr. Bill's practices seemed a little strange at first, but seeing improvement upon our first visit I was a believer! Josie immediately cried less often, and slept better. We felt hopeful, for the first time, that Josie might actually get better and be a happy baby.
Dr. Bill was very accommodating to our family, and sincerely wanted to see Josie improve. Josie did well with the adjustments, but some were definitely uncomfortable and she fussed. I was impressed that Dr. Bill always knew Josie's limits and did not push her, he worked at her pace. I love that Dr. Bill didn't want my husband and I to be dependent upon him or other doctors for Josie's progression. He taught us things that we could do ourselves with our daughter, so we could help her at home. I was hesitant when Dr. Bill showed me how to do a few things at home, I didn't know if I could actually help. But, Dr. Bill was patient with me and made sure I knew exactly what I was doing.
Within three weeks Josie was a different baby. She entirely stopped throwing up feeds, started sleeping through the night, stopped the inconsolable crying, and I was able to stop giving Josie Prilosec. Most exciting, is that Josie's reflux is under control and she has finally begun to take food orally! Our goal is to have the feeding tube out within the next two months. All of Josie's improvement since her hospital stay is due to the adjustments Dr. Bill did, as well as the gentle additional things that Dr. Bill taught my husband and me to perform at home.
My husband and I comment every day how happy Josie is, and how grateful we are to have found Dr. Bill. I think the most heartbreaking part of everything is firmly believing all of Josie's issues, especially the NG tube, could have been prevented if I trusted my instincts more than my pediatrician and also if I had found Dr. Bill sooner.