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PostPosted: Wed Aug 18, 2010 4:42 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 25, 2005 4:16 pm
Posts: 6
Hello,


Two weeks ago, I had one of the weirdest reaction, considering its context, in my life.

I was very thirsty after working just four hours for some reason, and I work at a drug store. Therefore, I decided to try that grape-flavoured Aquafina water that I had always wanted to taste. It was very refreshing and it filled my stomach slightly, as any water does, so I was content.

Within the hour though, as I drove back and got home, several symptoms started appearing : while I was driving, strangely a sort of arc in my right eye became blind, but the same 'blindness' that you get when you close your eyes, as if you can still see some flashes and shapes in the darkness. A few minutes after, while at home, I got the worst headache of my existence, it might have been a whole migraine even; so I took two Tylenol Extra Strength. The time to eat supper quickly came, and my headache was not gone at all. As I sat down at the table, my body became very weak, and I got strong nausea. I tried eating just one bite of the food I had already eaten before and that is one of my favourite meals, but swallowing it, I realised that I would not eat that evening. I went to lay down, hoping that my headache would at least disappear, but instead, I ended up vomitting violently three times that evening/night, probably as violently as with my egg allergy. And the headache stayed throughout the whole experience, almost warning me that I would throw up again. My mother could also clearly read my lips to tell if I still had to go to the bathroom.

The next day, things were better. I still had a small headache, and my stomach was obviously still fragile. However, it remained so for five days after that Thursday.



I tried searching for posts about this on this message board, but from what I have seen, there is not really anything of the sort. I also do not really know if this located in the right forum, so do not hesitate to move it elsewhere.

Eventually, I decided to email Pepsi co., who owns Aquafina, but obviously I have not gotten any reply yet. I would try calling them, but my spoken English is not as good as my spoken French, hah.


My goal is to just know for sure what ingredient caused this, and what I need to avoid in the future. Also, I would really like to know if this has happened to anybody else too. I am allergic to peanuts, eggs, nuts and cats, and my immune system is very weak in general, but I hope I do not have the only body that reacts like this in the world, hah.

I know I should probably get an appointment with my allergist, but it might take a while before I see him, and it would probably help him if I had a clearer idea before then of what triggered this whole reaction. Knowing the sort of ingredients that are used in flavoured waters, I do not think he would even have those to test on my skin, therefore it would take even longer to finally know what is the problem.


By the way, I had already drank another company's flavoured water before, and everything was fine. Also, I do not know if it can help, and it quite disgusting, but what I vomitted was clearly pink. It is probably due to the grape flavour, but perhaps it can be an important thing to mention ...



Thank you for your time, and I hope I am not one of those unique cases, hah,

Virginie
(I am nineteen years old, also.)

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 18, 2010 5:47 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 29, 2007 11:56 am
Posts: 120
Location: UK
what ingrediants were in the water...............

what was on the label?


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 18, 2010 6:48 pm 
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Joined: Mon Feb 07, 2005 6:39 pm
Posts: 2943
Location: Toronto
Also Virginie,

You mentioned taking a Tylenol - had you taken one earlier, with the drink?
Fair no. of drug allergies to aspirin or aceteminophen (aka Tylenol)?

Otherwise, yeah - the trick is what's on the label as Williamsmummy says. Or anything else at all that you ate in this time period?

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 18, 2010 8:29 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 25, 2005 4:16 pm
Posts: 6
I have to admit knowing what the ingredients were would help, hah.

I will eventually go back to check and get a clear list, but all I remember is things like sucrose, fructose, some hexam-something (or metax... ?) ... Besides those, none of the ingredients really seemed special or weird to me. Of course there was water, for instance.

And I am sure that I have eaten other things that had fructose before, so that would leave sucrose and that other oddly named ingredient.

My mother of course did some research on her own after this, and she told me she had found that there had been some minor reactions to sucrose before, but I tried finding those pages again and I did not get anything, hah, so I do not know where she read that information.


I took Tylenol only after drinking that flavoured water, when symptoms had already appeared like the headache, and remembering my reaction to eggs in Pogos earlier in my life, it was very clear to me that it was the flavoured water that caused all of this, especially since it all happened within the following hour. I drank normal water with the Tylenol, and I have no drug allergies, at least not to acetaminophen or aspirin.

And as I wrote, I decided to buy that Aquafina bottle of flavoured water right after work, and we cannot really eat while we work, so I almost only had that water in my stomach at that time, before I actually tried eating supper.


So, I will try to get the complete and precise list of ingredients as soon as possible, probably tomorrow, and post it then.

I am not sure if what I have is a clear allergy, but the reaction was certainly severe enough to surpass my egg allergy, and my body would probably react the same way if I took that ingredient or something again.

(Just for reference, the water was not 'outdated' or anything.)

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 19, 2010 6:47 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 29, 2007 11:56 am
Posts: 120
Location: UK
people with allergies do have very sensitive bodies, and quite frankly artificial sweetners , and colours do have an effect on the body.


perhaps your 'allergy cup' was a bit full that day, and that water tipped you over the edge.

uk has banned many food colourings aimed at childrens products, and certainly in general our food colourings are now more based on real food, rather than using artificial , (which brings its own problems for some!). the artificial colours have been linked to hives, eczema , asthma , etc etc. some of which my non food allergic child has had reactions to, as we are a sensitive family!


artifical sweeteners have had some nasty things linked to them, like cancer, but so far nothing that requires them to be removed from our food.

i cant have any artifical sweetners in my diet, due to my ibs, a small amount causes a rather quick, extreme reaction.
but to be on the safe side, we keep things that contain such stuff, like sodas to rare occasions or holidays for our kids.

next time you are thirsty, just buy plain water! the flavoured stuff is not a healthy option!


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 19, 2010 10:12 am 
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Joined: Thu Aug 12, 2010 9:29 am
Posts: 93
I would check with your doctor, but it sounds like you had a migraine. The blindness part was the aura. I get this when I eat too much dairy, and I have a mild allergy to dairy. I get blind spots and once it got to the point that I couldn't see anything. If I take a painkiller during the aura, I can keep the headache away, otherwise nothing works. Other symptoms of migraines are lethargy, nausea and weakness. Artificial sweeteners can trigger migraines, so can chocolate, dairy, red wine, weather and almost anything else.

Anyway, it's something else to keep in mind when you talk to your doctor!

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Me - Allergic to Dogs, Cats, Dairy, Nickle.
DH - Celiac Disease
DS1 - Allergic to Horses, Cats, Dogs - Asthma, Eczema
DS2 - Allergic to Cats - Eczema, Asthma


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 19, 2010 10:27 am 
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Joined: Tue Mar 22, 2005 11:17 pm
Posts: 6455
Location: Ottawa
Sad to say, but you may never get tot he bottom of this.

In your original post:
-you were more thirsty than normal after working 4 hours
-symptoms started an hour after ingesting the flavoured water
-you experience an arc of blindness within the vision field of your right eye with "some flashes and shapes in the darkness"
-this was followed soon after with "got the worst headache of my existence" possibly a migraine which you treated with 2 Tylenol Extra Strength
-You felt weak and and nauseaus and, after eating one bite of food (know to be safe) you experienced bouts of violent vomitting (3x that evening) with no reprieve for the headache
-the next day you were still nauseaus and the headache eased up but lasted for 5 days

It could have been an allergic reaction or it could have been a migraine. Both could explain most of the symptoms.
Ophthalmic Migraine
Quote:
...this crescent shaped blind spot containing this brightly flashing light can be difficult to ignore, and some people fear that they are having a stroke. In reality, it is generally a harmless phenomenon, except in people who subsequently get the headache of migraine.
http://www.perret-optic.ch/optometrie/symptomes_diagnostiques/symptomes/opto_symflot_gb.htm
The Mayo Clinic describes thrist as a symptom that may be experience prior to the aura or migrane.
Quote:
Not all migraines are the same. Most people experience migraines without auras, which were previously called common migraines. Some people have migraines with auras, which were previously called classic migraines. Auras can include changes to your vision, such as seeing flashes of light, and feeling pins and needles in an arm or leg.

Whether or not you have auras, you may have one or more sensations of premonition (prodrome) several hours or a day or so before your headache actually strikes, including:

■Feelings of elation or intense energy
■Cravings for sweets
■Thirst
■Drowsiness
■Irritability or depression
http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/migraine-headache/DS00120/DSECTION=symptoms

Since the flavoured water was consumed after this first symptom, I would lean more to this being a migraine however, don't drink the water again until you've spoken to your Dr.

I hope you're feeling better soon. Migraines are not fun. I've known people who need to go to their Dr for an injection to relieve the symptoms (but not being a Dr or nurse, I wouldn't know what tit was)

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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: Thu Aug 19, 2010 6:00 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 25, 2005 4:16 pm
Posts: 6
Hello again,


Thank you for all the replies.

As promised, this is the complete list of ingredients that can be read on an Aquafina bottle of grape-flavoured water : filtered water, natural flavour, phosphoric acid, citric acid, sodium hexametaphosphate, sodium citrate, sodium benzoate, sucralose (65 mg/591 ml), calcium disodium edta.

So the artificial sweetener would be the sucralose (whose name I had mistakenly remembered as "sucrose" in my previous posts) ?


Also, the theory of a major migraine does not sound that far-fetched to me, but what I find odd is the vomitting. I am very sure that even if I had not eaten that one bite of supper, it was just a matter of minutes before I would have thrown up anyway. It just accelerated the process in my opinion. The huge nausea came right before I ate anything.

So would the Tylenol mixed with the water and whatever was in it be responsible for throwing up as much as with my egg allergy, the mixture was that chaotic ?

Moreover, you are probably right about listing the thirst as a symptom in all of this too, but I just want to really clarify that I became very thirsty not even two hours into my four hours of work, so it was even weirder since it was not "too thirsty for having worked only four hours" in this case.



[quote=Hiebs]I would check with your doctor, but it sounds like you had a migraine. The blindness part was the aura. I get this when I eat too much dairy, and I have a mild allergy to dairy. I get blind spots and once it got to the point that I couldn't see anything. If I take a painkiller during the aura, I can keep the headache away, otherwise nothing works. Other symptoms of migraines are lethargy, nausea and weakness. Artificial sweeteners can trigger migraines, so can chocolate, dairy, red wine, weather and almost anything else.

Anyway, it's something else to keep in mind when you talk to your doctor![/quote]
Are Tylenol good painkillers, or do you take something even stronger ? Because as I wrote, the Tylenol really did nothing to appease the headache.

Also, now I am slightly confused, because apparently I had a migraine starting as soon as I became abnormally thirsty, but you say that artificial sweeteners can trigger migraines, so I have no idea, hah.

I am definitely going to try to talk to my allergist about this as soon as possible, especially now that I have the full list of ingredients.

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 19, 2010 6:16 pm 
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Posts: 373
Location: Alberta
Sounds really strange - I didn't start getting migraines until my mid-30's, but for several years I sufferred terribly. Nausea is very common, and vomiting is also a symptom of migraines. There were many times that I vomited during a migraine, and it also usually occurred after a bit or two of food. I thought that eating might make the headache go away, but in those cases it just made things worse. I was never able to pinpoint a trigger, but horomones (I went off the pill and they lessened by 90%) and elevation changes (I live at 3000ft - going to sea-level almost always triggered one) were the most likely contributors for me. Food and sweeteners are just too prevalent to be consistent triggers for me. For example, I eat chocolate almost every day! :lol:

Tylenol is what I find least effective for migraines. Advil / Aleve are better choices, but if they continue then speak to your doc. I also find resting in a darkened room, with an ice pack (the bean bag things) over my forehead seem to help alot. I'm not allergic to anything, by the way, and in the ER anti-nauseants are one of the 1st things given to someone with a migraine.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 19, 2010 6:43 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 29, 2007 11:56 am
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Location: UK
sodium benzonate, nasty stuff.

migraines also nasty and often food triggered......


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 19, 2010 8:49 pm 
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Joined: Thu Aug 12, 2010 9:29 am
Posts: 93
Wow, I can't believe that they put that stuff in water. What's wrong with just using a little grape juice for flavour?

I use ibuprofen (Advil) for my migraines, but I have to take them when the aura comes or else I'm too late. My migraines started when I was 7 or 8. I would have to sit in a silent, dark room with a cold pack on my head. Now I just go to bed if I don't catch them in time. I also get really thirsty the day before and the day of, but dairy does that to me in general. My dad gets migraines from dairy too (he has a dairy allergy) and he vomits every time. He gets prescription migraine medication and that's all that helps him. I don't wish a migraine on anyone...

Anyway, you are not alone, and good luck with figuring it out!

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Hiebs
Me - Allergic to Dogs, Cats, Dairy, Nickle.
DH - Celiac Disease
DS1 - Allergic to Horses, Cats, Dogs - Asthma, Eczema
DS2 - Allergic to Cats - Eczema, Asthma


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PostPosted: Fri Aug 20, 2010 10:12 am 
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Joined: Fri Oct 02, 2009 8:06 pm
Posts: 217
Location: Terrebonne, Quebec
Sounds like a migrane to me. I've been getting them since I was about 12, though something in the drink may have triggered it. I have vomited before due to migranes, and most of the time I don't get an aura, it's only happened once in my life (scared the heck out of me, I was 39 weeks pregnant and thought my blood pressure had gone WAY up and something was wrong - turns out I was fine, and got an aura, but no migrane, which was confusing). I always stick to the real water, because that flavoured stuff with artificial sweeteners always gives me the worst heartburn and tends to go right through.. Not fun. To this day, I still haven't found the trigger to my migranes, I take 2 advil liquigels right at the start and go lay in the dark for 6-8 hours. I never eat, it never stays down, I learned that the hard way.

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Daughter (2 years) - Peanuts Eczema
Son (7 months) - Contact allergy to something food undetermined


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PostPosted: Tue Apr 12, 2011 5:28 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 25, 2005 4:16 pm
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Hello,


I do not necessarily want to 'bump' this topic, but I think it is important that I update you all on the situation.

Finally I got an appointment with my allergist, and he told me it was just an ophtalmic migraine, as most of you said. I think he said that sucralose might have "helped" the migraine happen, but very very minorly. It would have happened anyway.

My mother still believes that it was not a simple migraine, however troublesome some of them can be. On my side, I am just trying to understand if I can ever predict if I have a next migraine, because it would be horrible if one happened with such intensity when I am just not home, because being stuck in a place away from your house vomitting for three hours is just not cool hah ...


Anyway, thank you all for your help, again.

Virginie

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 13, 2011 10:21 pm 
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Certain foods can trigger migranes in sensitive people, so it still may have been drink related. I tried the grape aquafina ONCE - hated it, and felt mildly unwell afterwards. Not like you describe, but unwell.

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