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Pediatrics/Reducing substance +ve in 5 month old baby


Dear Dr. Puneet,

My 5 month old baby has been tested positive for mucus, acidic reaction and reducing substance. Everything else came back negative. This test was instigated because we have been green stool for about a week. It was mucusy and pasty.

I dont know what this report indicates. I had the report checked by one of the local doctors and told me that he is not being able to break the suger in the breast milk. I wasnt very satisfied with the answer.

Anyway, please kindly help me in understanding what the report result means and whether a baby can be lactose intolerant. Also I would really appreciate if you could tell me if this is a temporary issue or a chronic one.

Thanks and eagerly waiting for your advise.

Thank You.

Hi Intekhab,

Your doctor is right. The test means that your baby is not able to break down (digest) milk sugar. Milk sugar is called lactose and hence this condition is called lactose intolerance...ITs just that your doctor was avoiding technical term (lactose intolerance) while explaining you in lay-man's language!!

It is USUALLY transient secondary to loose motions, but rarely one can be "permanently" lactose intolerant.

My earnest advise would be to remain in touch with your pediatrician...don't waste your time in excessively searching the net for medical issues...It is very likely to confuse you and increase your anxiety...nothing else. It is always better and easier to follow your doctor's advice!!

Best wishes,
Dr. Puneet Kumar,
Kumar Child Clinic, Dwarka,
New Delhi, India

+91-9818356846, +91-11-45535647  


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Dr. Puneet Kumar


I would be happy to answer general queries on prevention and treatment of ailments in newborn, infant, toddler, child or an adolescent. Needless to say, it will not be possible to answer any query that requires diagnosing, since it is not possible to examine a child online.


I have worked in various capacities (medical officer, resident, senior resident, consultant) in public as well as private sector in Pediatrics and Neonatology. Today, I have over 17 years of experience in the field.

Currently, I am running my own clinic (Kumar Child Clinic) in Dwarka, New Delhi and am attached to Lifeline Hospital, Dwarka as consultant pediatrics and neonatology. I am also developing my clinic website into a comprehensive child health/ parenting website (

(a) Chapter "National Immunization Schedule" in Frontiers of Social Pediatrics, Jaypee Publishers: 2nd edition, 2016. (b) Article, "All about Pertussis vaccines" in special issue of Indian Journal of Practical Pediatrics, July-Sept 2015 (c) Three chapters (DTP vaccines, Pneumococcal vaccines and Poliovirus vaccines) in "Textbook of Pediatrics for Post-graduates" First edition: 2015. (c) Chapter: "Alternative delivery methods of vaccines" in IAP textbook of Vaccines, First edition, 2014 (published by IAP/ Jaypee Brothers) (d) Special Article: "50 years of Immunization in India: Progress and Future" in January 2013 issue of Indian Pediatrics (e) Four chapters in "FAQ: Book on Vaccines and Immunization Practices" First edition, 2011 AND 2nd edition, 2015 published by Jaypee Brothers. (f) Three articles in special issue of Journal of Pediatric Sciences on “Controversies and Challenges in Pediatric Vaccination Today" in Sept, 2010. Co-edited the series also. (f) Regular column, “How do I treat” in Pediascene ( (g) Review article, “Role of Anti-Poliovirus Agents in Polio eradication and beyond” in Polio Pulse, April, 2008. (h) Chapter on “Acute Infectious Diarrhea” in Textbook of Infectious Diseases in Children. (An IAP Publication), 2007. 2nd edition in 2011. (i) Book-Review (IAP Pediatric Drug Formulary, 2004) in Pediascene, March 2005 ( ) (j) Case-report on Osteopetrosis. Jharkhand Journal of Pediatrics, Dec-2002.

After MBBS, I have done DNB residency in Pediatrics.

Awards and Honors
Winner of IAP practising pediatrician's quiz in 2001.

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