Infant Projectile Vomiting

Regular infant vomiting is perfectly normal in most healthy babies. Most infants will vomit or spit-up at least a handful of times in their first week or life, and although it seems concerning, there is usually nothing to worry about.

There are 3 main types of vomiting:

• Reflux This vomiting is actually common in babies. It is caused when the valve at the top of the stomach accidentally opens. The contents of the stomach come back up the esophagus slowly. Reflux is usually out-grown by toddlerhood, and it does not harm most babies.

• Projectile This is when vomit is bought up and out in a forceful way. The amount of milk often seems like a lot, but generally it is the contents of the last feed only.

• Possetting Also referred to as “spit-up”, this is common in young infants. It is where your baby vomits up very small amounts after a feed.

Infant Projectile Vomiting

Vomiting becomes a concern when it happens frequently and with force. Often there is an underlying cause of projectile vomiting.

You should also check with your Pediatrician or Health Care Provider if any of these symptoms occur:

• Your baby’s weight gain is suffering
• Your baby is acting sick, and generally unwell
• Your baby is having coughing or choking spells
• There is blood, or yellow/green bile in the vomit
• Your baby seems in pain

Projectile vomiting becomes a more severe concern when Pyloric Stenosis is diagnosed. Pyloric Stenosis is a serious condition that can lead to many complications, but is easily corrected with surgery.

Signs of Pyloric Stenosis:

• Projectile vomiting shortly after each feed
• Not gaining weight because of sever projectile vomiting
• Acts normal with no signs of illness, but may seem uncomfortable after a feed

Things to Remember with Infant Projectile Vomiting:

• Projectile Vomiting isn’t a concern unless it happens very frequently and your baby is loosing weight.
• All babies vomit, so don’t panic if and when they do.
• Always call your doctor/health care provider if things don’t seem right or you are concerned.


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