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Weight Gain (Preemie)

My son was born 16 weeks premature. His actual age is almost 8 months, his adjusted age almost 4 months. He came home on April 8th weighing 6 lbs 10 oz. He was on fortified breast milk, that the nutritionist said was mostly for a calcium and phosphorus supplement, not so much for extra calories. We took him off of it because his labs were fine and it seemed to be upsetting his stomach. May 20th he weighed 9 lbs 4 oz..June 17th 10 lbs 4 oz and his doctor was concerned saying that maybe we should start adding fortifier again b/c he wasn't gaining enough (I had gone to just strictly nursing, no pumped bottles)...July 15th he was 11 lbs 4 oz and she wasn't at all concerned, in fact she was pleased (I never went back to adding fortifier). Today he was weighed and was only up to 11 lbs 14 oz which feels low to me. I know 4-7 ounces per week is in the "normal range" but his weight has barely ever been that and now not at all.

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Asked by kynziesmom at 5:34 AM on Aug. 5, 2010 in Babies (0-12 months)

Level 10 (374 Credits)
Answers (10)
  • (Con't)

    It wasn't his pediatrician that weighed him today and he doesn't have another pediatrician appointment until September. He's only in the 10th percentile for weight, though I'm not sure if they're charting him as a 4 month old or an 8 month old....

    I'm just lost here....

    What do you think about his weight gain patterns?

    I could start pumping again but that will greatly hurt my supply after a while. Maybe adding fortifier to the pumped bottles he gets while I work 3 days a week could make a difference?

    I'm honestly not that concerned but everything I read says I should be?

    His diaper count is fine and he seems satisfied...Guess I'm just looking for some input on our situation?

    Comment by kynziesmom (original poster) at 5:37 AM on Aug. 5, 2010

  • He should gain at least a pound a month. Weight is the best way of assessing baby growth, better than diaper count. You should talk to the doctor before adding fortifier since it may have things in it that he should not be getting at this age. I would increase the number of times you are breastfeeding and make sure the baby finishes the first breast and gets the high fat milk. If the baby is sleeping through the night I would wake the baby to nurse since you are a working mom.


    Answer by Gailll at 6:06 AM on Aug. 5, 2010

  • my son was also 16 weeks premature, we had him on Similac neosure for extra calories, he didn't gain excess weight but he was gaining weight, he was always between the 1-10 percentile for his age, I pumped at the beginning until I dried up but when I gave him breast milk we would add 2 scoops of neosure. he was on neosure until he turned 1 gestational age his doctor wanted us to put him on regular cows milk and it helped him a little. He is still small. He weighs almost 20 lbs. and he's 15 months, but he is crawling and active so he kinda slowed down on the weight gain. Does your pediatrician specialize in preemies?!

    Answer by babyangelromero at 6:29 AM on Aug. 5, 2010

  • My son was 6 weeks premature, and we had similar issues. He's 2.5 now - 80% percentile for height, 10% for weight. He's healthy, very active - my pedi said that it's just him and not to worry. (He didn't even make the chart for weight until he was almost a year old.) As long as your baby is growing and healthy, try not to stress about it. They all grow at their own pace.

    Answer by Scuba at 10:08 AM on Aug. 5, 2010

  • By the time they hit gestational age of 4 months their growth should slow down a bit. with a full term baby: "The very rapid growth a baby experiences during the first 3 months typically slows down during months 4-12. According to recent research (Cohn 1995; Dewy 1992) an average weight gain for a breastfeeding baby 4-6 months is about 3-5 ounces (85 to 142 grams) per week. An average weight gain for the breastfeeding baby 6-12 months is 1 1/2 -3 ounces (42-85 grams) per week."
    So, if you consider your LO is now 4 months old, you should expect his weight gain to be slowing down.

    Answer by maggiemom2000 at 11:39 AM on Aug. 5, 2010

  • They are all different. Use your judgement. My DD was 5 weeks early. She was 5 lbs1 oz when she was born. She was 4 lbs10 oz. when we brought her home. By her first birthday she was only 12.5 lbs. She is now 4 1/2 and is 39 lbs. They all grow at different rates. She gained most of her weight the first year during the months 2-5 and then slowed down a bit until 2 months after her 1st birthday. It was crazy!

    Answer by kangnroo1205 at 12:05 PM on Aug. 5, 2010

  • Are you feeding him any regular baby food yet? I can also tell you that our ped told us to start her on regular whole milk at 10 months.

    Answer by kangnroo1205 at 12:07 PM on Aug. 5, 2010

  • if you're not worried, then don't be. i say give it till september, and you'll probably get a good gain. your dipe count tells all.

    Answer by abelsmama07 at 5:07 PM on Aug. 5, 2010

  • Babies catch up, but there can be clinical reasons for the baby not gaining wt. i would make sure that you and the pediatrician have a game plan. Getting up in the night will stimulate his gaining wt. I had to do that with my son who was 9 weeks premature and weighed in at 4 lb and 9 oz's.

    Answer by Joy118 at 9:13 PM on Aug. 6, 2010

  • I have a 22 weeker she is still in the Nicu now and I am pumping for her but with my full term baby Mackynzie she gained about 1.5 or more pounds a month so maybe you should try things that have lots of calcium.

    Answer by mljmom1999 at 8:48 PM on Sep. 1, 2011

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