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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 12:31 am 
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Posts: 214
They had a very small subplot about food allergies on tonight's Grey's Anatomy, featuring a major character. Meredith (the lead character) has a half-sister Lexie she is just getting to know, and after a frosty beginning to their relationship, she is finally starting to warm up to her. In the last episode, Lexie came over after a difficult day and wound up spending the night. In the morning, we see that Meredith is cooking for her as a gesture, and she takes a bite of an omelet and grimaces.

Later, we see her at the hospital (they are doctors) asking her supervisor where the epinephrine is, and then we next see her rummaging in a cart for it. Another character asks her what she's doing and she explains, saying that as the adult child of an alcoholic, she has boundary issues, and when Meredith made the gesture to cook for her, she couldn't say no---she had to eat it, and did not tell that she is allergic to eggs. She turns around and we see she's covered in a rash, and when she fumbles and says her throat is closing up, the other doctor helps her administer the shot. She seems fine in the rest of the episode and it is not spoken of further.

Ten bucks says we never hear about Lexie's egg allergy again, but it was nice to see a 'plotline' like this on a character like this because usually, allergies are only shown on nerdy hypochondriac characters :) Lexie, adult codependent boundary issues notwithstanding, is still a romantic catch on a soapy show like this :)

Of course, it it goes without saying that it was stupid for her to eat the eggs, and even stupider that a person with anaphylaxis was not carrying an epi-pen on their person. By the time she got to work, found her supervisor, got the shot etc. it would be much too long, and indeed, she seemed to be in considerable difficulty :) Stupid not to hav an epi-pen with her, even if she does work in a hospital :)

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Asthma and eczema
Drug allergy (succinylcholine)
Food (corn, raw apples, green beans, tree nuts, flax)
Misc (pollen, grass, mold, dogs, cats)


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 7:59 am 
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Boy, her character sounds a bit messed up. I would think that being in the medical field and being related and getting to know each other no matter how frostliy, comparisons in hereditary health issues would have come up especially if they had an intimate evening of catching up.
Does this episode give the impression that someonewith a FA can chance it if they feel uncomfortable and that any reaction will be delayed long enough for them to get to a hospital on foot or by car?
Epinephrene is a pretty common drug in any hospital crash cart and I can't imagine them looking for her Epi-Pen when they have drugs at their disposal. In fact at a Para-Medics tour last year we learned that the Para-Medics would not use our Epi-Pens as the prefer to assess weight and give the exact dosage as opposed to our dumbed down one-size-fits all Epi-Pen.
There are some holes in the plot line.
But any incidence where fod allergies are taken seriously is a positive I suppose.

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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 Jan 11, 2008 9:47 am 
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I don't know if they necessarily presented it as being okay, but I did read some comments in general about the episode, and people seemed to think that it was 'cute' and 'sweet' of Lexie to accept the gesture and eat the eggs in spite of the allergy. I think a lot of people don't realize how serious allergies can be and that people can die from it.

I still think that even though she works in a hospital, she should have been carrying an epi-pen. It seemed like she ate the eggs, got dressed, drove to work, then spent a good little while tooling around the hospital looking for her supervisor etc. before she actually got the shot, and by then, she had a full-body rash and her throat was closing up :) If she knew she was allergic i.e. had a history with it, she probably should have taken right away, before she was even out of the house.

I think the effect they were going for was a) Meredith makes a gesture and b) Lexie is so emotionally messed up about her family that she'll go to any lengths to exploit the attempt at connection. I would be (pleasantly) surprised if we ever heard about the allergy again :)

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Asthma and eczema
Drug allergy (succinylcholine)
Food (corn, raw apples, green beans, tree nuts, flax)
Misc (pollen, grass, mold, dogs, cats)


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 11, 2008 1:11 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 6:53 pm
Posts: 1454
Location: Canada
I saw that show, too. People thought it was "cute" that Lexie ate those eggs? Arghh!!

I agree that allergies were not associated with 'nerdiness' this time round . . which is a good thing!

But the show gave the wrong impression about allergies. Before Lexie found the epinephrine, she said that her throat was closing up. She seemed to recover the second that George administered the dose. Neither she nor George seemed at all concerned after that . . .and we all know that epinephrine is a magical drug that makes all allergic problems go away instantly requiring no further medical supervision and allowing people to return to work 30 seconds later! :roll:

I think what we have here is a screen writer who wanted to use an allergic reaction as a plot device but didn't do his or her research. I have a feeling a lot of the medical situations in this show are like this.

----------

Oh, and Susan--to answer a couple of your questions about the show---the impression I got was that Lexie had a delayed reaction. But maybe we were supposed to think that she was reacting all along. I don't know. The medical 'facts' aren't really the focus.

It is plausible that her sister Meredith wouldn't know about the allergy because she didn't know her half sister at all, and when Lexie shows up at the hospital as an intern, Meredith tried really hard to keep her distance.


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