Just thought I would tell you about my almost 5 year old Korean adopted daughter – in case anyone else finds themselves in the same situation.
Our daughter came to us from Korea at 9 months of age, and from her first introduction to solids, had stomach cramps and sometimes wind. Mind you it took us a couple of years to figure out this was the problem. She would wake up almost every night, crying and sometimes screaming (which we later found out was in pain). For a long while we put it down to just insecurity and settling in issues. She had mostly normal nappies, and most of the time was a happy little girl. Sometimes after certain foods we would notice she was very irritable and grumpy (but it was also difficult to tell whether this was just normal behavior or something more).
After two years of trying to find out what was going on, a GP suggested we try a new type of immune blood test (via mail order through Cambridge Uni). This showed up that she was reacting to all sorts of foods – mainly - soy, egg, dairy, wheat, gluten, peas, beans and a few others. This was like a miracle for us – once we eliminated all these foods from her diet – she slept through the night, and stopped being irritable and was a different child. And so we continued, keeping her on a very restricted diet and trying to avoid all the trigger foods. She would react even if she ate a lolly that contained glucose (wheat) she was so sensitive. The only way to relieve her pain (which almost always occurred during the night, was to get her vertical, and pat her back for ½ an hour or so).
Then last year a friend asked me if I had ever had her tested for parasites, as some are known to cause food intolerances. In all my years of taking her to various doctors – no one had suggested that before. Anyway, after talking to my GP, I was referred to a pediatrician, who tested her for IgE antibodies, and she had a stool test for parasites – all of which came up negative. I was very disappointed, as I was really hoping this was the answer. Anyway, I had read that a lot of parasites show up as negative during testing (depending at what stage of the cycle they are at), so I asked my pediatrician if we could try treatment for parasites anyway.
He reluctantly prescribed a course of Flagyl (an everyday antibiotic that is specific for parasites), and after one week of treatment, then one week of rest from the trigger foods, I am absolutely delighted to tell you (after four years of her screaming in agony over certain foods), that all her food intolerances have magically disappeared! We are amazed and just so pleased for her – it is absolutely life changing. She can now eat anything, and everything with no pain
Needless to say, we are pinching ourselves at our good fortune (as well as feeling a little guilty that we hadn’t heard about this before), so that’s why I decided to tell everyone I can now – just in case it may help someone else.
It is most likely that she came to Australia with this parasite (at least that is what I presume it was), and it has been living in her system all these years, causing the problem. I suspect it was the parasite – Dientamoeba Fragilis that was the culprit. If you google it, you will see it can cause a wide range of food intolerance issues. I have since heard of other little Korean adopted kids with similar issues (and in one case this was the culprit parasite that did show up positive on a test) also being helped by a course of specialised antibiotics, so maybe someone else out there is also suffering the same problems.
So if you suspect food intolerance issues in your child, ask your GP, be persistent, and hopefully help is not far away.
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