Cow’s Milk Protein Allergy (CMPA)

This information is intended solely for education purposes. It is in no way intended to be medical advice. Should you require medical advice, please contact your child’s doctor.

Cow’s Milk Protein Allergy (CMPA) is the commonest food allergy in infants. Not to be confused with lactose intolerance.

Symptoms can include:

  • Skin: rash (including eczema).
  • Respiratory: runny nose, nasal congestion, sneezing.
  • Gut: loose bowel movements, frequent bowel movements, constipation, blood in stool, mucus in stool, reflux, vomiting, increased gas.
  • Behaviour: food aversion, colic, fussiness.
  • Growth: poor weight gain.

Symptoms of severe allergy or anaphylaxis include swelling of face/tongue/lips/throat, hoarse voice, breathing difficulty, dizziness, lightheadedness, fainting, lethargy, loss of consciousness. If there are any of these symptoms, call the local emergency service (i.e., 911)/go to ER.

Under advice and supervision of a doctor, treatment of CMPA includes a 2 week trial of:

  • If exclusively breastfeeding: mother should go on an elimination diet (eliminate dairy, and sometimes also soy).
  • Formula: Nutramigen or Alimentum.

Most children grow out of CMPA and milk can be re-introduced at a later date that can be discussed with the child’s doctor.