You are viewing Allergic Living Canada | Switch to United States

Talking Allergies

* FAQ    * Search
* Login   * Register
It is currently Sat Dec 20, 2014 7:39 am

All times are UTC - 4 hours




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 14 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: new member
PostPosted: Sun Jul 01, 2007 5:27 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Jul 01, 2007 4:55 pm
Posts: 6
my wife Has an allergy to nuts. she had her first serious reaction 10 days ago. from that point she has been in the emergancy room three times and adminstered epipen twice. how long before the toxins are removed from her body? I know it may be that she is using something that is making recurring, but generally how long before she feels like her old self and off predisone. thank you for your help we are lost for answers.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jul 02, 2007 8:25 am 
Offline

Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2005 4:04 pm
Posts: 2044
Location: Gatineau, Quebec
Hi there -

If she keeps reacting, I would guess that she is eating something that contains her allergens and that it is not caused by the food she originally ingested.

A biphasic reaction (where you have a second reaction because of the food you originally ate) typically occurs anywhere from one to 38 hours after you first react. So if she is reacting more than once beyond her original reaction, I would say that she is likely eating things that she is allergic to.

You say that she is allergic to nuts - what kinds of nuts? Peanuts are a legume (like beans, peas, chick peas, lentils), while tree nuts (e.g. walnuts, almonds, cashews, etc.) are considered to be part of a separate food family. Has she had advice to avoid peanuts AND tree nuts? Or just the one? A lot of people who are allergic to peanuts also avoid processed food that contains tree nuts because of the risk of cross-contamination. And vice-versa: A lot of people who are allergic to tree nuts also avoid processed food that contains peanuts as well for the same reason.

There are a lot of processed foods that may contain peanuts or tree nuts, although the choices are certainly getting better as companies realize that peanut-free and/or tree-nut-free foods have a large market.

You and your wife will have to do a crash course on what is safe to eat. If you live in the US there are new labelling laws that require that food labels clearly show if something contains the top 9 allergens. See the US FDA Q&A page for some info about that. (Although also keep in mind that companies have a few years left in which to sell/use up their stores of food that didn't have the clear labelling.)

If you live in Canada, there is no law for clear labeling yet (unfortunately) but most large manufacturers are very good about their labelling. I would check out the online brochures from the CFIA about Tree nut allergy and Peanut allergy.

It's important to know that it is not the law in either the US or Canada to label for foods that "may contain traces" of peanuts or nuts so sometimes you have to call the companies to confirm. And if a food says it "may contain" something, it really may contain that allergen - it's not always the company covering its butt. A study done a few years ago showed that about 17% of processed foods that said they may contain an allergen did contain the allergen.

Some Canadian companies whose labelling I trust (i.e. "if it's not on the label it's not in the product") are Dare, Kellogg's, General Mills, Leclerc, Mr. Christie/Kraft, Dempster's, POM. There are others - and I'm sure the gang will pitch in some other names. Surf around the Shopping, Peanut allergies, Tree nut allergies, and Hall of fame forums for some more info.

Also see the Web Links from my local support group for info about food (click on Food Labelling Info).

Has your wife seen an allergist and gotten advice on what exactly she should be avoiding? That is really critical. An allergist should be able to help her try to get things under control. Obviously going into anaphylactic shock on a regular basis isn't good for her physically or mentally, and I'm sure it's very difficult for you as well.

If she keeps reacting and it's not clear what the cause is, I would suggest she keep a food diary (sample available here ) to help you pinpoint what exactly is causing her problems.

Hope this helps. I'm sure it is very scary for both of you right now.

K.

_________________
Karen, proud Mom of
- DS1 (12 yrs): allergic to cashews, pistachios, Brazil nuts, potatoes, some legumes, some fish, pumpkin seeds; OAS
- DS2 (1o yrs): ana. to dairy, eggs, peanuts; asthma


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jul 02, 2007 9:51 am 
Offline
Site Admin

Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6502
Location: Ottawa
I agree that she is probably continuing to eat her allergen. Since she is aware of her allergy, I doubt she is eating a nut but suspect that there is some cross-contamination.
I would suggest that she and you go through everything in your kitchen reading labels and toss out any opened jars of jam, mayonaise, containers of margarine ... anything where you may have inadvertently placed a knife, which had traces of a food product into. Think of it as double dipping.
I would also recommend scrubbing down all cupboards, counters and cutting boards.
It may seem like a lot of time and energy but think of how long you spend at the hospital for each reaction, it really isn't long compared to a couple of those.
I hope she's feeling better soon. Allergic reactions are two pronged. First there is the obvious physical reaction for which there are medications. Then there is the stress of realising that there is something potentially deadly in your home/lifestyle. Often times you have eaten a mixture of foods and have to play detective to figure out which is the allergen. This can fray nerves. Be kind to each other and get some rest.

_________________
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


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jul 02, 2007 11:42 am 
Offline

Joined: Sun Jul 01, 2007 4:55 pm
Posts: 6
Thank you for your support. Your words are kind and informative. It seems that we have to be our own doctor and carefully dissect her lifestyle and determine the cause. We are fortunate the medication is working to manage this situation. I am waiting to for the allergist to fax a report of everything my wife is allergic then we will avoid everything for a while.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jul 02, 2007 1:33 pm 
Offline

Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2007 3:29 pm
Posts: 192
Location: Ohio
Quote:
I am waiting to for the allergist to fax a report of everything my wife is allergic then we will avoid everything for a while.


You say here for a while. I am sorry to say she should avoid them totally forever. as adults we don't grow out of our allergies infact we get more somtimes. I in the past month have added two more to my list. Our traditional Ham on holidays will be discontinued.

_________________
Karen in Ohio mom of 7
Allergic to tons and tons of food as well as perfumes, scented air sprays and cleaners. Hubby to Fish, ds #2 Shellfish, youngest to Eggplant, potato, Caesin, Raw Tomato & spinach.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jul 03, 2007 9:00 am 
Offline

Joined: Thu Mar 03, 2005 9:38 pm
Posts: 1643
Location: Toronto
I agree -- avoidance is forever.

But, as difficult as that sounds, it really does get easier.

_________________
self: allergy to sesame seeds and peanuts
3 sons each with at least one of the following allergies: peniciilin, sulfa-based antibiotic, latex, insect bites/stings


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Jul 05, 2007 2:24 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Jul 01, 2007 4:55 pm
Posts: 6
thank you for your help we are dealing with avoiding foods, and my wife is lowering her dosage of predisone. We all seem to be dealing with some mental issues. I guess it is anxiety. my wife goes through the day and it seems like she is always looking for symptoms or thinking when is the attac going to happen again. Every time my cell phone rings I get a knot in my stomach awaiting bad news again. Is this common? any advice would be helpful. I know I am new to this site but in a very short time I learned so much from you and we couldn't have made it this far without you.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Jul 05, 2007 2:34 pm 
Offline

Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2007 3:29 pm
Posts: 192
Location: Ohio
Speakig from the my heart the only thing that you can do is be supportive. When she talks about her allergy hug her. When she has symptoms look at her check on her let her know you take it serious. I feel very releaved when my husbadn does this for me.

_________________
Karen in Ohio mom of 7
Allergic to tons and tons of food as well as perfumes, scented air sprays and cleaners. Hubby to Fish, ds #2 Shellfish, youngest to Eggplant, potato, Caesin, Raw Tomato & spinach.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Jul 05, 2007 6:22 pm 
Offline
Site Admin

Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6502
Location: Ottawa
This is a huge learning curve! To find out that something you would eat by the handful without a second thought could actually kill you? Of course she has anxiety. For you to realize how close you came to losing her and the implications of that on so many facets of your life- huge again.
Expect some anxiety as you both recover your footing. Your lives have changed and you are facing challenges that you didn't expect to have to face. Each social situation will present unique challenges so this first year should prove interesting. Accept that and embrace change (what choice have you got really?).
If you think of your lives so ar I am sure you will see that you have overocme many obstacles. This is one that you will face together and with your support she will find a way. We all have, so it is do-able.
Take time and talk to each other. Try to break your anxieties down into manageble pieces.
Disect her diet and look for areas that need to be changed. Look for alternative foods. She may find that she needs/wants to make more food from scratch. She may find that she/you enjoy it!
Look toward the anxieties you have regarding the dreaded phone call. Do you both have up to date wills? Do you know where they are? This is not a negative thing, this is a responsible thing to do. (Um, again, no , mine is currenlty not up to date :oops: )
I'm just trying to say, don't be too hard on yourselves. Anxiety is normal after such a diagnosis and having several reactions so close together would sacre anyone. Be kind to each other.

_________________
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


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jul 06, 2007 10:04 am 
Offline

Joined: Thu Mar 03, 2005 9:38 pm
Posts: 1643
Location: Toronto
jmclr4 wrote:
We all seem to be dealing with some mental issues. I guess it is anxiety. my wife goes through the day and it seems like she is always looking for symptoms or thinking when is the attac going to happen again. Every time my cell phone rings I get a knot in my stomach awaiting bad news again. Is this common?


Anxiety and fear is a very common reaction. In fact I'd worry about anyone that didn't feel any anxiety over this.

I have adult on-set allergies as well. When it started I weighed about 105 lbs. I became so terrified of eating that I lost over 15 lbs, which is pretty serious at that size. My husband was a nervous wreck. We didn't have a cell phone, just a pager. I was terrified to page him if it wasn't life-threatening because I figured the beep would make him jump and he'd crash the car. He had to make arrangements with his boss to not travel for a while. He was afraid to leave me home alone with our kids.

The worst for us was before we figured out what was causing the reactions. Once we knew the cause we worked towards eliminating it. I now average one or two minor reactions per year, from eating some undeclared trace amount -- usually of sesame seeds. That's so much better than daily reactions, some of which I was to dumb to realize I should have been going to the hospital over. :oops:

Allergic Living did an article on Fear of Food not long ago. Most of the article is available here:

http://www.allergicliving.com/features.asp?copy_id=93

_________________
self: allergy to sesame seeds and peanuts
3 sons each with at least one of the following allergies: peniciilin, sulfa-based antibiotic, latex, insect bites/stings


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: thanks again
PostPosted: Sat Jul 07, 2007 9:02 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Jul 01, 2007 4:55 pm
Posts: 6
that link to the article was great. this is what we are feeling exactly. My wife is happy she is not crazy and others experienced the same feeling. we are taking it day by day. I think we will get over the fear of eating a little easier becaues we are italians from new york city that have an emotional bond with our food. Eating around are house is just as much a social event as it is nutritional. I have been a NYC Police Officer for 17 years and endured a lot but this is the most stressful event I ever been through including working through 9/11. Whoever you are that are posting this information are making a lives so much better and I don't know how to thank you.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jul 07, 2007 11:42 pm 
Offline

Joined: Sun Jul 01, 2007 4:55 pm
Posts: 6
Sorry about the typos but this has been a real tiresome two weeks.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jul 08, 2007 10:51 am 
Offline
Site Admin

Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6502
Location: Ottawa
Quote:
I have been a NYC Police Officer for 17 years and endured a lot

This will be of service to you. You have dealt with life and death situations before. I suspect that you have a lot of resources at your disposal through your police training.
Concider relating food alergies to your work.
I don't know any police jargon but this comes to mind in no particular order:
1. Establish a base = Start by making your home a safe zone. Once you have that, you can branch out.
2. Everything is suspect until ruled out = Read all lables 3x (when putting in shopping cart, when putting away and when opening) even if this is the 50th time you are purchasing it.
3. Maintain your equipment = Epinephrene (Epi-Pen/ Twinject) is with you when eating (NO EXCEPTIONS) check frequently to ensure it is in good shape and not expired concider how many doses you require (keep a back up).
4. Cover your partners back = you need to support each other mentally and emotionally as well as physically. She will be your strength as much as you will be hers.
5. Divied and conquer = Each of you can take on a specific task and allow the other person to focus their attention on one aspect. One person researches safe foods and recipes while the other ensures medication is up to date and Dr's appointments are organised perhaps prepares a list of questions to be answered.
6. Emergency preparedness = New York winters can have severe weather. When away from how concider how you would handle being snowed in and forced to stay the night at someone elses home. Can you carry some supplies that would not perish if left in the car? Depending on the allergy can you come up with a safe meal at another persons home? For us it means keeping a clean (not used for allergens) can opener and cutting board in the car. We are able to make do with the hosts vegetables/rice/oil/canned salmon to prepare a meal. We have left caches of food at the homes of friends where this situation is likely to occure.

You are stronger than you realise and you have the support of people like us who have been through this already.

If you are anything like most people I know, be prepared for a sudden jolt about 6-18 months into diagnosis. Initially, you read everything and get your house in order. You education family and friends and get into a comfortable exsistence. Then something will happen that will make you relaise that you don't have everything under control. It will probably be something small but it's a wake up call to maintain vigilance.
For me it was forgetting our (then 2) daughters' snow pants at her Grandmothers' house when we travelled. No huge deal but I realized that I didn't do a final check to ensure I had her Epi-pen before we left. We had left her medication across town once during the trip when my husband changed the diaper on a bed. I threw everything back into the diaper bag but the fanny pack with medicine was hidden in the folds of a blanket.
For my daughters school teacher it was when she realized that popsicles constitute food. In fact anything which is eaten, drank, inhaled or absorbed into the skin needs to be concidered. This means food, drink, candy, medicine, lotions, vapours etc.
Oops, sorry for the long post! Don't worry too much about your spelling errors and I won't worry too much about mine. :)

_________________
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


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jul 08, 2007 4:15 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Nov 29, 2005 4:04 pm
Posts: 2044
Location: Gatineau, Quebec
There are some other interesting articles and such that I have posted on my local support group's website. Go to

http://ottawaasg.com/OASG2006/modules.p ... =Web_Links and click on Psychological Effects. The article at the bottom of the page - The Allergy Prison - is excellent.

You are doing a lot of the right things (even if it feels like you are spinning), including finding help and support, so give yourself a pat on the back! :)

K.

_________________
Karen, proud Mom of
- DS1 (12 yrs): allergic to cashews, pistachios, Brazil nuts, potatoes, some legumes, some fish, pumpkin seeds; OAS
- DS2 (1o yrs): ana. to dairy, eggs, peanuts; asthma


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 14 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 4 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
cron
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group