Cow’s Milk Protein Allergy in Children

This guidance is for babies with symptoms of non-IgE cow’s milk protein allergy only.

Around 2% of infants are allergic to the milk protein contained in cow’s milk. Standard infant formulas in the UK are all based on modified cow’s milk. If a baby is breast fed, they can still display symptoms if the mother eats dairy, as it is present in a semi-hydrolysed form.

IgE mediated cow’s milk allergy presents with classical allergy symptoms including: urticarial rash, lip/face swelling, and vomiting. These symptoms are usually immediate. If there is difficult/noisy breathing and/or collapse, this is a medical emergency. Parents should call ‘999’ and ensure the child is seen urgently in A&E.

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