Allergic eosinophilic gastroenteritis is a true allergy -an antibody related
condition (IgE-mediated) in half of sufferers and is not antibody related in
the other fifty percent. Allergic eosinophilic gastroenteritis causes
severe gastric reflux, abdominal pain after meals, vomiting, feeling full
early in the meal and diarrhoea. The diagnosis is suggested by the
presence of inflammation of the oesophagus which is infiltrated by certain
white blood cells known as eosinophils. This may also be seen in the stomach
or small intestine. Treatment with a strict avoidance diet is required.
The symptoms of infantile proctocolitis are inflammation of the rectum and
lower colon and are of short duration. This is usually related to the baby
being fed cow's-milk protein or breast milk from mothers who are consuming
cow's milk. It provokes diarrhoea which may be bloody, but anaemia rarely
Proteininduced Enterocolitis and Enteropathy
Patients with colitis induced by food protein are often diagnosed as babies
with profuse vomiting and diarrhoea. When severe, these symptoms may lead to
lethargy, dehydration and hypotension mimicking bacterial infections.
Improvement occurs with elimination of the responsible protein, most often
cow's milk or soya.
Patients may also have more long term and
persistent symptoms that are induced by milk, soy, egg, wheat, rice, chicken
or fish. These patients are described as having food proteininduced
colic. The role of food protein sensitivity whether an allergic
response or not, remains controversial in cases of infantile colic and
inflammatory bowel disease remains controversial.
Although failure to thrive in infants may be associated with malabsorption
resulting from food allergy, a restrictive diet imposed by the family can
also result in poor growth. Misdiagnosis of food allergy in children
can cause failure to thrive.