Feeding Problems

What are Feeding Problems

Poor feeding, a lack of interest in feeding or a problem receiving the proper amount of nutrition, is a nonspecific symptom seen in newborn and young infants that can result from many conditions, including infection, metabolic disorders, genetic disorders, structural abnormalities, and neurological disorders. Poor feeding is not an indicator of the severity of the disease, but it is an indicator that (even in the absence of other symptoms) suggests close watching of the infant. Poor feeding is not the same as “picky” eating. Many children between ages 2 and 4 are picky eaters.


Signs and symptoms of feeding problems include dehydration, failure to thrive and malnutrition.


A child who is feeding poorly will often have other symptoms and signs that, when taken together, define a specific syndrome or condition. Diagnosis of that condition is based on a family history, medical history, and a complete physical exam. Laboratory studies such as x-rays, gastrointestinal (GI) studies, and blood tests may be ordered.


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