A friend of mine told me that doctors in the UK are given targets to only provide a limited amount of expensive prescriptions. What techniques have you used successfully to persuade your GP that you need to check the baby for lactose intolerance.

asked 04 May '10, 20:37

digiguru's gravatar image

accept rate: 0%


This article only talks about antibiotics, and only for viral things like coughs and colds for which antibiotics are useless anyway: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/healthnews/6546295/Thousands-of-family-doctors-being-paid-not-to-give-out-antibiotics.html Do you have any info about this happening for other prescriptions?

(04 May '10, 23:22) Scott ♦♦

+1 Good question. In my honest opinion, I would first see what your GP has to say. While friends can be well meaning, (and I say that sincerely) sometimes their own personal experiences and judgments could be slightly misleading. I would suggest that you visit your GP with an open and well informed mind. Learn before hand your patient rights as Scott rightly points out and take it from there. Good luck!

(05 May '10, 14:05) Emi

@Scott - only word of mouth from a lactation consultant who used to be a midwife.

(06 May '10, 18:38) digiguru

Actually, real lactose intolerance is extremely rare in small babies, it usually doesn't turn up in children until they're about 4 or 5, but, when small babies are tested they very often turn up a false positive on the test.

So, medical practitioners that are informed about breast feeding almost never send little ones for the test. (And bottle fed babies show the same tendency to show false positive, but are often switched to lactose free formula before being tested.)

Here is one link that explains about secondary lactose intolerance

and here's another

To understand what's really going on, you have to understand how breast feeding really works. (Not saying you don't, but a lot of people think it's like drinking a cup of milk, or a bottle of formula. Which it really isn't.)

Which this link explains beautifully

I think I remember that you're feeding breastmilk by bottle, you're solution may be as simple as making sure that the hindmilk is being pumped (if you leave the milk sitting for a few minutes it will look like cream on the top) and then swirling (Thanks @Dave!) it back into the milk before storing it (so it freezes uniformly-ish). You probably should also let it settle back to the top of the bottle before feeding it to your little one so that it approximates what would happen when baby is breastfed. ('Cause it will slide to the "bottom" of the bottle when you turn it over to feed, right?)

Good luck, and I really, really hope that your little one isn't one of the very few babies who are lactose intolerant, because I've developed it as an adult, and it really limits your diet and can be very painfull when you eat something that you shouldn't.


answered 05 May '10, 09:02

Neen's gravatar image

accept rate: 30%

edited 06 May '10, 05:18

+1 Very informative !

(05 May '10, 14:05) Emi

You really shouldn't be shaking breastmilk anyway -- it damages it. http://www.bflrc.com/ljs/breastfeeding/shakenot.htm

To mix it, it's best to swirl it around in the bottle gently, after warming it back up.

(06 May '10, 04:23) dave0

Cool, thanks @Dave!

(06 May '10, 05:16) Neen

@dave0: I read the article you linked to, and I find it very hard to believe what is said there - AFAIK, proteins are not denaturated by simple shaking or stirring.

(08 May '10, 20:36) Bert

@Bert, that seemed a bit fishy to me. Further reading in "On Food And Cooking" (an excellent resource for food nerds) tells me a lot about the chemistry of milk, but doesn't mention a temperature. It does say that it's possible to physically break the thin membranes around fat globules in suspension, which then exposes them to fat-digesting enzymes in the milk, leading to off flavours. So, it's probably still not a good idea to shake it, even if the article is incorrect on the specifics.

And, my son refused bottles of breastmilk that had been shaken, so maybe there's something to it.

(18 May '10, 03:14) dave0

I know with our family doctor (Canada, not the UK) you have to "advocate" for yourself, which basically means asking for a referral when you think you need one, or asking him for what you think you might need, like a test. In the case of referrals, if you ask for one they pretty much have to give you one.

Tests may not work the same way, and they certainly are expensive so they shouldn't be given out willy-nilly, but if you do a little reading and say, "my baby has this, this, and that symptom, and I'd really feel better if she were tested for lactose intolerance" then if I were the doctor I would give you one of two answers:

  1. "While those symptoms are consistent with lactose intolerance, your baby shows no signs of such-and-such which is a very strong indicator that she doesn't have it...", or
  2. "Ok, we'll send her for the test..."

Either outcome is positive.


answered 04 May '10, 23:36

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Scott ♦♦
accept rate: 10%


+1 Great sound advice!

(05 May '10, 14:06) Emi
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Asked: 04 May '10, 20:37

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Last updated: 06 May '10, 05:18