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 Post subject: New to Peanut Allergy
PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2005 11:34 am 
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Joined: Thu Sep 29, 2005 2:07 pm
Posts: 100
Location: Burlington
When we went to see the pediatician who specializes in respiratory issues, my daughter had a skin test for peanuts and it came back positive. Are there other tests?


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 Post subject: labels
PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2005 11:38 am 
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Joined: Thu Sep 22, 2005 11:39 pm
Posts: 1141
Location: saskatchewan, canada
I was in the same situation. My daughter ate foods which said "may contain " peanuts before we found out she was allergic with no problem. I consider ourselves to have been lucky. Now that her allergy has developed, it may take less exposure ( traces ) to trigger a reaction than it did before she developed the allergy. Being exposed to traces ( even if you are not violently reacting to them ) can worsen your allergy, and increase your chances of anaphylaxis.

All foods that contain nuts can kill her.
I look at 'May contain" labels as this food may kill her, it won't definitely, but it might. You might get lucky once, or five times, but eating these foods will one day have consequences.

Also, you need to be very careful of bakery products. The occassional nut can end up in anything. Other peoples food can be scary. Jam at other peoples houses can contain peanut butter from a kinfe being placed in it. Bulk foods ( even smarties ) aren't safe because the scooper might have been in the peanut bin, and placed in the smartie bin. Other people making a peanut butter sandwich for breakfast can then use the same knife, cutting board, dirty hands to prepare snack for their nut free preschool snack they send to share with all kids at school.

The more careful I am, the less stress I have over the situation. I think its also important to teach my daughters the lesson that their safety is more important than the brief enjoyment of any food. My daughter brings her own snack for preschool every day, while the other kids share community snack. She also brings her own cupcake to birthday parties and knows not to eat any food unless it comes from home.

Look for Alexander the elephant books too. They are great to read to your kids and teach them about allergies.

https://www.foodallergy.org/shoppingcar ... ONWEBFLG=Y


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2005 2:48 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 6:53 pm
Posts: 1454
Location: Canada
There's the RAST test--and I think there is another blood test that can be done too--it's called immunocap or something.

Positive skin tests in and of themselves don't necessarily mean an allergy. But they are actually more sensitive than the blood tests. Based on my experience, allergists tend to give a skin test first if an allergy is suspected. If it's a severe allergy and the clinical history is clear, they don't question the positive skin test. But if they aren't sure, they sometimes order a blood test. Both can be positive even if there is no allergy---the next step is an oral challenge (which might not be a good idea from my point of view for a child with a suspected peanut allergy especially if the child has environmental allergies and/or asthma). I've read somewhere on the internet (from someone's personal experience so this source isn't necessarily reliable) that doctors consider both tests more reliable indicators if they are both positive and if they demonstrate comparable levels of allergenicity. Confusing isn't it!

I've only had one blood test done. After my skin test for wheat was positive, the allergist I used to go to ordered a blood test which was also positive. Based on that + my clinical history he told me never to eat wheat again. I get the sense that my current allergist is a bit skeptical about the wheat allergy, but we haven't really discussed the issue yet so I'm not sure what he thinks.


Last edited by Helen on Wed Oct 05, 2005 2:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2005 2:51 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 6:53 pm
Posts: 1454
Location: Canada
Just to add to my previous post---the blood test tests the level of allergen-specific IgE antibodies in the blood. (I'm hoping I'm getting the terms right, here.) Some people, though, have IgE floating around in their bloodstream but no allergies. No one knows why.


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 Post subject: tim hortons
PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2005 5:53 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 22, 2005 11:39 pm
Posts: 1141
Location: saskatchewan, canada
I know someone who is allergic to peanuts and had an anaphylactic reaction to a chocolate chip muffin from tim hortons. It did not contain nuts. Generally all the foods share baking equiptment, and touch the shame work areas, nuts can show up in anything from there.


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 Post subject: Re: labels
PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2005 11:09 pm 
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Joined: Sat Apr 16, 2005 12:09 am
Posts: 1054
saskmommyof2 wrote:
Bulk foods ( even smarties ) aren't safe because the scooper might have been in the peanut bin, and placed in the smartie bin.

In addition to the cross contamination issue that saskmommyof2 discusses, I wanted to point out that not all smarties are peanut/nut-free (the same goes for coffee crisp, aero, and kit kat chocolate bars). It's important to note that only snack sized portions of the above noted bars carrying Nestle's "peanut-free" logo are actually manufactured in their peanut-free plant. Do not assume that all sizes are peanut-free. I copied the following quote from their website:
Quote:
Nestlé offers the only guaranteed peanut-free chocolate products, producing individually wrapped snack size Smarties, Kit Kat, Aero and Coffee Crisp bars that are produced in a peanut-free environment.

You can also take a look at their "peanut-free promise" for more detail: http://www.nestle.ca/NR/rdonlyres/740CE8EB-3A9E-4193-B44A-41A48B18BCF2/0/PeanutFreePromise.pdf

On another note. -- I guess one can't be sure that the smarties used at McDonald's for their McFlurry's are peanut-free either ?? Has anyone verified this with McDonald's??


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 06, 2005 11:48 am 
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Joined: Wed Mar 23, 2005 9:47 am
Posts: 305
Location: Montreal, Canada
You daughter's story ressembles mine. I always have been allergic, I was born with it. I ate peanuts or peanut butter 3 times in my life.

1) I ate one peanut. My parents say I did not like it and afterwards I vomited and I broke out in hives.
2) I took one bite in a peanut butter cookie, same reactions but faster, a couple of minutes instead of 30 mins.
3) My mom had guessed I was intolerant to peanuts so she told me not to eat any. However, at my cousin's birthday party (I was 4), there were peanut butter sandwiches. I was carrying plates and a little bit of peanut butter got on my finger. Instead of going to wash it, I licked it. BAD IDEA!!! within seconds, I was sneezing, weezing and sweeling up. I was rushed to the emergency room of the nearby hospital where I got a shot of penicilin and got Benadryl form an IV. The doctor told my mom I should NEVER, EVER eat it again or I would die within 20 minutes.

So can it be progressive? Hell yeah. If I were you, I would make sure your child does not eat it again and I would start reading labels.


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 Post subject: New to Peanut Allergy
PostPosted: Thu Oct 06, 2005 1:20 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 29, 2005 2:07 pm
Posts: 100
Location: Burlington
Wow, that's scary. Do you now check labels and avoid Tim Horton's?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 06, 2005 2:49 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 23, 2005 9:47 am
Posts: 305
Location: Montreal, Canada
I read EVERYTHING, in French and in English, both at the store and before opening the package at home. So this means I read the label 4 times. As for restaurant, I do not eat out. The only food I will eat is the food my mother makes or that me or my gf makes (we live together and go grocery shopping together so I know that everything in our house is safe). As for my mother, even though I do not live at home anymore, she still shops as if I was. I know I can trust her 100% with my allergies.


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 Post subject: peanut allergies
PostPosted: Thu Oct 06, 2005 4:54 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 22, 2005 11:39 pm
Posts: 1141
Location: saskatchewan, canada
I know that it may sound overwhelming to hear that you must read all labels, and never eat out with your child again. However, a lot of people including myself are in this situation.

A lot of restaurant staff do not understand. I do not want someone preparing my childs food who does not understand the serverity of a food allergy. Someone working in a restaurant could easily touch nuts and then your childs food. The chef might do it, the waitress might do it... I would be way too stressed out to even attempt this. Also utensils, counters cooks hands, can all contaminate your food.

I have numerous allergies in my children, however with your child being only allergic to nuts ( I envy you ) you might be okay with mcdonalds, I've heard that they take care in ensuring nuts do not touch other foods, but check this out yourself because I never go there.

My children are allergic to:
My 4 year old to: peanuts and nuts still strictly avoiding fish
My 2 year old to : milk, eggs, chicken, beef, playdoh, strictly avoiding all nuts and fish


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 06, 2005 10:05 pm 
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Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 6:53 pm
Posts: 1454
Location: Canada
Anaphylaxis Canada provides really good guidelines for eating out---they recommend asking questions not only about the ingredients but on how the food was prepared, etc.

Like saskmommy and youngvader I personally am not comfortable with eating out in restaurants although I have been known to eat chicken at Swiss Chalet. Maybe someday I'll eat in one of those restaurants that mention on their menu that they accomodate people with allergies.....


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 07, 2005 8:54 am 
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Joined: Wed Mar 23, 2005 9:47 am
Posts: 305
Location: Montreal, Canada
Have you ever seen that, Lisa? I remember seeing, not that I hate there, that if you have food allergies, you should ask questions before ordering. But asking question does not mean that someone won't touch nuts and then your food.


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 Post subject: New to Peanut Allergy
PostPosted: Fri Oct 07, 2005 9:00 am 
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Joined: Thu Sep 29, 2005 2:07 pm
Posts: 100
Location: Burlington
I got an appointment with an actual allergist for my daughter...unfortunately it's not until March. You'd think with a child newly diagnosed with a possble life threatening allergy they'd make it a little sooner. I'm so glad I found this site....it has helped me tremendously.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 07, 2005 2:02 pm 
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Joined: Wed Mar 23, 2005 9:47 am
Posts: 305
Location: Montreal, Canada
That sucks! I'd try to find an allergist that can see you sooner.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Oct 07, 2005 3:18 pm 
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Joined: Mon Apr 11, 2005 9:38 pm
Posts: 927
Location: Oakville, Ontario
Quote:
I know that it may sound overwhelming to hear that you must read all labels, and never eat out with your child again. However, a lot of people including myself are in this situation.


I can totally relate to this statement, and it's taken my husband and I quite some time to realise that NO, we can not eat out ANYWHERE with our 3 year old son - that includes all restaurants, and we must bring all his food to our friends places, and sometimes to immediate family functions. At least with our immediate family, they have been immensely supportive, and always consult with us everytime we come over. We're still prepared with extra emergency food, and supplement meals as required, but they always consult with us. As we always bring food for our son, we find out a couple of days in advance what is being served, and we do our best to match his meal to the rest of the kids. I also do this with his preschool as he is exempt from the food program. It definitely takes extra work, but it's absolutely necessary. Heck, our son just an an allergic reaction to touching the handle of the grocery cart, and he required the Epipen, ambulance, hospital. I'm almost certain it must have been from peanut butter. We just can't take any chances. Did we learn this right away? NO. Almost 3 years ago when he was initially diagnosed, we have gone through the full range of emotions and adjustment, but we now make the best of it and have now made it part of our lives. It definitely took time to get to this point in our lives. We've become very creative in our cooking and finding other ways to treat ourselves without food being a source of entertainment.

I really feel for what you are going through with this new diagnosis. I remember, like it was yesterday, what that felt like. Our son is allergic to peanuts, tree nuts, sesame seed, sunflower seed, egg, fish, mustard seed, pineapple - so it's quite a big, scary list. Just realise you will find a way to adjust to this, and you'll be okay with it - it just takes time, and this forum has helped our family tremendously! I think I would still be going crazy if I hadn't found it!


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