Reflux & Regurgitation

Digestive Symptoms of Cow'S Milk Protein Allergy.

Regurgitation is defined as the passage of refluxed gastric contents into the oral pharynx and differs from vomiting, which is defined as the expulsion of the refluxed gastric contents from the mouth.1 

Reflux is the involuntary regurgitation or “bringing up” of gastric contents after feeding, and occurs in about 20-25% of healthy infants.2,3 

Reflux and regurgitation are more passive and not the same as vomiting, which is when milk is forced out of the baby’s stomach.4 Both reflux and regurgitation symptoms are common in infants, and generally resolve by 12 months of age.4 And although they may be unsettling to witness, they are both normal processes that can occur due to physiological immaturity of the lower esophageal sphincter. 


What Causes
Reflux or
Regurgitation in

In rare cases there may be an underlying cause to excessive reflux or regurgitation. For example, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), where the muscle valve between the esophagus and stomach is weak and fails to function correctly, or there is a blockage in the digestive tract.

Could It Be a
Symptom of
Cow’s Milk
Protein Allergy?

CMPA and reflux are considered to be among the most common disturbances seen in infants.5,6 Reflux and regurgitation are also known to be common symptoms of CMPA.6-8 Cow’s milk protein has been shown to be responsible for inducing symptoms of reflux in almost 50% of infants under the age of 12 months.5-7

However, when considering the diagnosis of CMPA, it’s important to understand that the majority of infants with CMPA have at least two symptoms affecting at least two different organ systems.9-11 Therefore, consider the individual child as well as the magnitude of their symptoms. This can be achieved using an awareness tool such as the Cow’s Milk Related Symptom Score (CoMiSS™) which will help you determine if CMPA might be indicated.12,13

Overview of Symptoms

Respiratory icon


Up to 30% of affected infants with CMPA have respiratory symptoms15,20

Anaphylaxis icon


Anaphylactic shock is a severe, immediate, allergic reaction, which can affect many organ/systems

Skin icon


Up to 75% of infants with CMPA can have skin-related symptoms21

General Symptoms icon


Inconsolable crying is very common in infants with CMPA associated with sleeping problems and food refusal