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PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 4:34 pm 
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Joined: Sat Apr 01, 2006 11:21 pm
Posts: 78
Location: Connecticut, USA
I was *very* lucky to have caught the doctor and pharmacist mistake! Our son has croup. The doctor (not our regular and by the way, the same one who gave us the sample of Elidel for *minor*, barely there eczema) prescribed a steroid pill. I asked her to make sure it didn't have any of DS's allergens and she was sure it didn't but told me to double check with the pharmacist.

I went to the pharmacy and as I was getting the meds I asked if the pharmacist had double checked whether the med had DS's allergens in them. I reminded her of his allergens and said at the end, "and he can't even have medical grade lactose." She came back a *long* time later and told me that his allergens weren't in the medication except there was one word that they weren't sure what it meant. If not for that word I would have driven away with the med and given it to DS since they checked and said it didn't have any of his allergens in it. But because she wasn't sure of that one word she gave me the package insert which she would not have given me otherwise.

I looked at it and asked which word it was that she wanted me to check and as I was doing this I see the first or 2nd ingredient is LACTOSE!!! I told her, 'this has lactose. That's dairy!' She said, 'no, I don't think so.' I said, "yes, it is!" She said, "But your son isn't allergic to dairy." I said, "yes, he is!" And she said, "you didn't tell me that." I said, "Yes, I did!!!!!!!"

Can you imagine? I almost drove off and gave that to DS and if he had reacted I would have thought it was the croup which is causing him to have nearly all the signs of an allergic reaction (coughing, throat tightness, difficulty breathing, stomach ache and lose stools.) The croup symptoms could have easily made me mistake anaphylaxis for the croup getting worse and caused me to delay or not give the epi!!!

I handed her the 'how to read a label' cards for each of my son's allergens and later the pharmacist on the phone told me she never saw them. This pharmacy has a drive-through and I was relying on the person who runs the window to give my questions and info to the pharmacist but she didn't do a good job! So, no more drive through with new meds for us, even if DS is sick and asleep in the backseat after a night of nearly not sleeping and it is cold out like it was today! We will go into the pharmacy and speak with the pharmacist directly each time and explain the allergies, even if it means waiting much longer.

At the end of all this the doctor spoke with them and decided to give DS the same med in shot form so we had to go back to the doctor's and we got no medication from the pharmacy.

I did ask the woman at the window to please read to me DS's allergens. When I had handed her the allergy card she had said all they had in their system was "berries and nuts". I have told them to correct that at least 6 times in the past and had them read back the correct info to me so I don't get why 'berries and nuts' were all that was in there.

Anyway, she had corrected this info, supposedly and when I asked her to read it back she didn't want to but reluctantly said, "they are all in there. Don't worry. I have all of them--nuts, dairy and sesame." I told her those are not all his allergens. She said again they were and then said, "eggs fall under dairy and the pharmacist knows that so you don't put them both in." I said, "No, eggs and dairy are not the same. They are two different things. And peanuts are not the same as tree nuts." She reluctantly added these in.

I got home and was p•••ed. They could have killed my son! I wanted them to understand this so that in the future it won't happen again to us or anyone else.

So, I called and spoke with the head pharmacist and at first she insisted there was no error since I was never actually given the medication. I explained several times that that was only because I *by chance* saw that it had lactose/dairy in it *after* being reassured that it didn't contain any of my son's allergens.

We talked and she apologized and she agreed that eggs are not dairy, that peanuts are not tree nuts (although she thought sesame was a tree nut but accepted it when I told her it wasn't.) She put through a 'forced note' into their system that will pop up first each time they enter our info rather than as a comment that the pharmacist may or may not see reading, 'life threatening food allergies to dairy/milk, eggs, peanuts, all tree nuts and sesame. Can not have medical grade versions of these allergens, either.' (Or something like that.) She also liked my idea of giving the pharmacist a card, like a chef's card, explaining that DS has LTFAs and all the words that mean each allergen. She said this is an *excellent* idea and would be very helpful. She also recommended I come straight in to the consultation area each time and not wait in line to pick up meds and make sure I talk with the pharmacist directly.

I wanted to post this here to help others avoid what almost happened to us!


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 6:18 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6456
Location: Ottawa
Wow! Good for you to double check andto follow up with the pharmicist.
I think it's a great idea to take the time to go through ever ingredient even after the professionals have determined it's is safe. No one knows our child's(or your own) allergies like you do.
If we read food labels 3x, we owe it to ourselves to read medicine labels too.
It's hard to do that when you're over tired and just want to go home.

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Daughter: asthma, allergies to egg, milk, peanuts, tree nuts, most legumes (not soy) & penicillin. Developing hayfever type allergies.
Husband: no allergies
Me: allergies to some tree that flowers in May
Cat: allergic to beef, pork and lamb


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 28, 2007 6:36 pm 
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Joined: Sat Sep 16, 2006 6:50 pm
Posts: 205
Location: Ontario, Canada
Eggs are dairy???? Peanuts are nuts???

:shock: :shock: :shock:

Glad to hear you caught all this before administering the medication.
[/quote]

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daughter: 6 years tree nuts, peanuts


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 29, 2007 12:45 am 
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Joined: Thu Sep 22, 2005 11:39 pm
Posts: 1141
Location: saskatchewan, canada
It's really quite scary that you can't trust medical professionals. I've been prescribed penicillan numerous times despite it OBVIOUSLY being in my file that I'm allergic...and much more obvious than other allergens. You would think penicillan allergy = no penicillan, but that's not always the case. The other day, I had to have this really sugary orange drink at the doctors (test for gestational diabeties...I'm 27 weeks pregnant) and I almost passed out from it. While I was laying down, the lab tec took my blood (it was part of the test). After a while, I felt better, went home and wondered why my arm was soooo itchy. Laytex bandaid. It's in my file that I'm allergic...but at the time I was struggling to stay concious it slipped my mind to insist on a laytex-free one :roll: .

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DD age 9 1/2 -peanuts, nuts,
DD age 7 1/2 - milk, eggs, chicken, peanuts, treenuts, cats, dogs,
DS age 2 1/2
Husband- asthma, eggs, treenuts, fish, shellfish environmental
Self - penicillan, eurithromiacin, mild laytex allergy.


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 30, 2007 4:38 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 6:53 pm
Posts: 1454
Location: Canada
This is a *major* problem. I wish someone would do a prominent medical study on it . . .that way the problem might get some attention.

Another issue----I landed in the ER recently for a brief period, and the paramedics took down all my medical info. meticulously. And when I got to the hospital, they went over all the allergy info carefully.

now if the hospital gets *any* allergy, I would think it would be latex. i know surgeons for one *have* to follow a meticulous allergy management plan for people who are latex allergic. I noticed that the info. I gave the paramedics was not communicated to the hospital staff at all---someone else checked me in, and then when I managed to make it to the counter, I said "I'm sure you have this info. already, but I just wanted to double check that you know I have a latex allergy." The receptionist had no idea. It seems to me that the paramedics do not communicate with hospital staff (?!) (I'm not really all that concerned about my latex allergy . . . my point is that there is a lack of communication here.)

I'm not sure what the point of the paramedics' report is if it doesn't make any difference in terms of hospital care? Maybe there is something I'm missing here . . . does anyone know how allergy info. is communicated to hospital staff in a medical emergency??


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 30, 2007 11:05 pm 
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Site Admin

Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6456
Location: Ottawa
Last time we took an ambulance to the hospital (8 days ago), the paramedic took down all of the information and put it on his laptop computer.
At the hospital, the admitting nurse took down the same information. I suspect the paramedic's information was for billing purposes.

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Moderator
Daughter: asthma, allergies to egg, milk, peanuts, tree nuts, most legumes (not soy) & penicillin. Developing hayfever type allergies.
Husband: no allergies
Me: allergies to some tree that flowers in May
Cat: allergic to beef, pork and lamb


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