I'm asking this here because it's more likely some of you have dealt with this kind of thing...but maybe not. I'll try here first!
So, our fd is 6 weeks old and is a neonatal abstinence baby (Mom was on a lot of psychotropic drugs including anti-psychotics). The baby is on phenobarb and was automatically put on a soy formula--Similac--because so few such babies can handle milk products. She had 50-50 breastmilk for her first two weeks before we convinced her doctor to stop that because the drugs from Mom were having a profound effect on her alertness and if they were making her act drugged out, what ELSE were they doing?
Fast forward. Her digestive system is working better--no more running poop. In fact, the soy formula is making her constipated and giving her painful gas. So, her doctors suggested we try a milk based formula. Maybe she outgrew that problem and is ready for that.
First full bottle of Similac Advanced lead to projectile vomiting. So, we stopped. The constipation on the soy got much worse. We were having to do baking soda baths every day, basically helping her poop. Her little tummy was hard and painful and she was NOT happy. The doctor suggested Lactulose to help her out. The kid's older bio brother (with another foster parent) went through a lot of this. He vomited his soy formula too, the Lactulose meant diarreaha and rash, eventually he was put on Alimentum, which he vomited, too, and then rice cereal in it and then reflux meds that didn't help. But, that baby was worse off than this one is, so we have hope.
So, the doctor suggested we first try Alimentum before settle for the soy (since soy seems to be a link in precious puberty among other things). Projectile vomit the second feeding.
So, back on the phone with the doctor. She's out, got the nurse. The nurse pointed out that the feeding she vomited was large (4 oz, she normally eats 2.5-3.5 at a time). We have not been told to do this gradually and have wondered about that, but they don't recommend it. The nurse further told us that many babies vomit some when changing formula and we should test longer.
Well, if we're going to put up with vomiting, we thought, we should go back and test the Advance first since it would be better to have her on that than Alimentum. So we're 24 hours in to gradually switching the formula (first 50-50 now 66-33) and limiting each feeding to 2.5 oz. She's had two incidents of small amounts of vomit (nothing like the full feeding at full force we had before!) But, we don't yet know if this is successful or if we're just torturing every body. Our plan is, if we conclude the Advance isn't working, to then try Sensitive (lactose digested) before going back to the Alimentum.
If you changed formula (international adoption?) was there vomiting? How long did it take to settle down?
If you had a kid who couldn't tolerate milk formula, how did you know?
What would your reaction to projectile vomit on a new formula be?
What is your experience/opinion on soy?
Did you ever have to use the lactulose stuff?
Did you have a baby on Phenobarb and does it effect the baby's digestion?
Do you hang out on any other forums where there might be parents who have answer to these kinds of questions? (I'm aware it's often difficult to talk about formula on mothering...)
(It may be obvious, but I'm not interested in a conversation about why we're not inducing lactation--she may leave our house any day, it's illegal, we don't want to jeopardize things--or inducing and pumping secretly and somehow keeping up supply without a baby at the breast leading to the kinds of behaviors from the baby that would give us away. And we have to use mainstream, not organic, formula because WIC covers it and she may be leaving our house for a kinship provider who will use WIC and all that and so it would be cruel to put the baby through two formula changes)