Over the last 7 years the journey to discovering food intolerances for Joshua has been a very long and painful one.
We noticed after potty training that he had some tummy troubles being sometimes super gassy and the consistency of his motions were very loose more often than not. I pushed the GP for a hospital referral when he was just about to turn 4 and after feeling his tummy the Dr in the hospital sent us home implying that I was a fussy overprotective mother and that it was all in my head.
I was upset for a long time after that appointment and so decided after some time that maybe this was normal for some people to have such loose stools so frequently. We carried on for a few more years but with symptoms worsening and the fact that Joshua was now having to leave the table at meal times to use the toilet we knew the time had come to get to the bottom (excuse the pun) of the problem and as he was starting to notice that his friends at school didn’t do this we decided to take it back to our GP as a matter of urgency.
The Kind GP
This time the GP was amazing! She took the time to really chat with Joshua about how his tummy felt, what his symptoms where and she pledged to get him the help she was sure he needed so as many of the blood tests were done before being sent back to the hospital and this time to a different consultant.
Within a couple of months Joshua was seen at Queens Medical Centre in Nottingham and again we were faced with such a kind and compassionate Doctor who listened intently and made a real effort to get Joshua to open up to her and explain things from his own voice.
We knew his iron levels were low so to start with we were prescribed liquid iron for him for a couple of months and then on returning his levels were taken again. With no major improvements it was decided that the Consultant would take us down the intolerance route and we were sent home to await some test days for him.
The First Breath Test
Today we headed back to the hospital for his first Breath Test which was for fructose intolerance. We arrived and parked and Joshua was super nervous about what would happen at the appointment. The nurse we saw was amazing and calmed him down almost instantly. All day yesterday Joshua had eaten a limited set diet to ensure the hydrogen in his tummy was low for the start of his test.
So after fasting since 8pm the previous night the test started with blowing into the machine to get a base level hydrogen reading which was 7 for Joshua. He was then given a fructose liquid (which I am told was awfully sickly) that he had to drink as quickly as he could. Then he had to brush his teeth and wait 15 minutes to blow into the machine again. The first hours tests are carried out at 15 minute intervals then they drop down to every 30 minutes for around another 2 hours.
We were told from the off that an increase of 20 points from a base line reading would be a positive result. So going for the first measurement after the base line test it was a 4 which we were told can be normal to drop a little bit, the second test (30 minutes in) was a 5. Then at 45 minutes in and the 3 measurements in he blew a reading of 28, meaning a positive test result for fructose intolerance.
Part of me was a tiny bit relieved that I had been right all these years. I was obviously just massively pleased to get some answers for him so we could help him going forward. After all his tests are complete we will be looking at spending January eliminating foods that can affect his tummy but for now we have to have the next 2 tests carried out. Next week we have a Lactose intolerance breath test for him so watch this space as we continue on this very first rung of Joshua’s intolerance journey.