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Spitting up in babies: What's normal, what's not
When it's something more serious
Normal spitting up doesn't interfere with a baby's growth or well-being. Contact your baby's doctor if your baby:
- Isn't gaining weight
- Spits up so forcefully that stomach contents shoot out of his or her mouth
- Spits up green or yellow fluid
- Spits up blood or a material that looks like coffee grounds
- Resists feedings
- Has blood in his or her stool
- Has other signs of illness, such as fever, diarrhea or difficulty breathing
These signs and symptoms might indicate an underlying condition or something more serious than run-of-the-mill spitting up. Treatment depends on what's causing the problem. Special feeding techniques are often helpful. In other cases, the doctor might prescribe medication to treat reflux.Previous page
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- Winter HS. Gastroesophageal reflux in infants. http://www.uptodate.com/home/index.html. Accessed Feb. 10, 2011.
- Vandenplas Y, et al. Pediatric gastroesophageal reflux clinical practice guidelines: Joint recommendations of the North American Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition (NASPGHAN) and the European Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition (ESPGHAN). Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition. 2009;49:498.
- Gastroesophageal reflux in infants. National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse. http://digestive.niddk.nih.gov/ddiseases/pubs/gerdinfant/index.htm. Accessed Feb. 10, 2011.
- Madani S, et al. Gastroesophageal reflux disease. In: McInerny TK, et al. American Academy of Pediatrics Textbook of Pediatric Care. Elk Grove Village, Ill.: American Academy of Pediatrics; 2009:2054.