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 Post subject: Question Re Tree Nut
PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 11:11 am 
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Joined: Thu Jun 29, 2006 10:21 am
Posts: 64
Location: Mississauga
Hi Everybody,

My daughter has a severe allergy to Peanuts. She has been tested at the allergists office and we carry an epi pen. At the time she was not tested for tree nuts but the allergist said that we should keep her away from ALL tree nuts as well because there is a very high probability of cross contamination.

So my concern is that I am in the process of filling out an "Emergency Plan Booklet" that her school has given me to hand in by the end of this month and of course it asks what are her allergies and what she should NOT be allowed to eat at school. My family doctor who has to fill out a couple of pages says that because she wasn't officially tested for tree nuts she couldn't allow me to put that in the Emergeny Plan Booklet for her school. I totally disagree because of what the allergist told me.
Her advice to me was to go home and experiment giving her nuts to see if she would have a reaction!?!?

So I kind of freaked out on the doctor a little bit! :oops:
Am in the process of trying to find another family doctor.

Do you think I'm overreacting? I'm actually shaking as I right this. Any opinions would be greatly appreciated.

Take care,

_________________
7 year old daughter-Allergic to Peanuts/Nuts
6 year old son-No allergies
4 year old daughter-No allergies


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 11:36 am 
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Joined: Sat Apr 16, 2005 12:09 am
Posts: 1054
Hi Carla -- I absolutely do not think you are overreacting. Your daughter's situation is the same as my son's. He's only ever been tested for peanut - his allergist wanted to wait until he was older to test for tree nuts because he knew we would avoid anyway and didn't want to put my little guy through all the poking and prodding at such a young age. Due to the increased likelihood for a peanut allergic individual to be allergic to tree nuts (35% chance accoring to http://pbskids.org/arthur/parentsteache ... rgy_QA.pdf ) I think it's irresponsible advice from your doctor to suggest that you do a food challenge for other nuts at home (not to mention the fact that tree nuts are also cross-contaminated with peanut which your daughter is severely allergic to!!) I think your emergency plan should include tree nuts. I think that you are right on the money about finding another doctor (I know this is not always so easy given the shortage of doctors in many areas). You are definitely NOT overreacting. Stand your ground on this one! Good luck and let us know how it all turns out.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 12:32 pm 
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Joined: Fri Jan 06, 2006 8:22 pm
Posts: 154
Location: Georgia
Hi Carla,

My vote? Find a new Family Doc. She obviously doesn't understand allergies. Can't believe she didn't just run a RAST for tree nuts? And like ethansmom said, cross-contamination with tree nuts/peanuts is very possible.

Could you get your Allergist to fill out the form?

Take care,
Daisy


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 1:16 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 05, 2006 1:05 pm
Posts: 528
Location: Burlington, Ontario
Hi Carla,

Why don't you phone the allergist's office and ask their advice. After all, he/she is the specialist, not your family doctor. I wouldn't go by the family doctor's advice on anything relating to allergies, especially severe food allergies. Only consult the allergist. I have a very good family doctor, but I quickly realized that she was out of her league with allergies.

In all likelihood, your allergist will add the tree nuts. Or just add them yourself once the doctor has signed the form. I then suggest you send that doctor some literature explaining the facts about peanut/tree nut allergies and cross-contamination.

Good luck and keep us posted!

_________________
15 year old - asthmatic, allergic to cats, dogs, horses, waiting to be "officially" diagnosed for anaphylaxis
12 year old - asthmatic, allergic to tree pollen and mold, OAS
Husband - Allergic to amoxycillin
Self - Allergic to housework only


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 3:31 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 03, 2005 9:38 pm
Posts: 1643
Location: Toronto
First, I agree with Carla about contacting the allergist. He/she may charge for getting forms filled out, but it would be worth the cost to have it correct and accurate.

However, I disagree with adding information after the doctor signs the form. It would be obvious that there was different writing, ink, whatever - and you would be setting yourself to not be trustworthy at the school.

*******

Regarding the cross-reactions between nuts/peanuts, that is only if they have been processed together. If the nuts are still in the shell you would not be at risk of cross-contamination.

I wouldn't have thought the risk of being allergic to both peanuts and a nut was as high as 35%, but I've never really looked into it. I do feel the risk of being allergic to a nut is higher if you have any food allergies - definitely higher if you have a peanut allergy. Don't know why, since peanuts are not nuts - but the two allergies seem to go together somewhat.

As an adult - I have considered sitting in a hospital waiting room and eating some nuts to see if I would be OK with them. I wouldn't even consider doing that at home. In the end, I decided it just wasn't worth the risk. After 15 years, I am only now starting to eat some products that list *may contain tree nuts* - but only from a few companies that I trust.

Carla, I don't know how severe your child's reaction to peanut was -- and I'm not sure if that even matters with regard to nuts. My own reactions to peanuts were not serious - but sesame seeds would kill me. I agree that your doctor gave you dangerous advice.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 3:45 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jun 29, 2006 10:21 am
Posts: 64
Location: Mississauga
Thank you everybody for your responses. You're right about the fact that I should go to my allergist's instead of the family doctor. I guess the waiting period to get in to see him kind of put me off. I'm on a cancellation list right now and hopefully I can get in before the end of August.

Nicole, I thought the same thing about adding it in after BUT her writing looks like chicken scratch and it will totally look like I added it in. But trust me I thought exactly the same thing! :lol:

I guess I'm just really frustrated with doctors right now. I haven't had much luck. When my daughter had her initial reaction to peanut butter (she was 2) and we took her to the doctor, he mentioned that when she turned 4 we should try to see if she had outgrown it by putting a little bit on her lip!!! :shock: Even though we were new to this we knew that that sounded totally wrong. Let's just say we practically ran out of that office!!

Needless to say I find myself looking once again for another doctor! But honestly, I'm so glad I have found this forum.

I think that it is important that you all know how much it matters reading what you have to say.

Take care,

_________________
7 year old daughter-Allergic to Peanuts/Nuts
6 year old son-No allergies
4 year old daughter-No allergies


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 5:04 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 05, 2006 1:05 pm
Posts: 528
Location: Burlington, Ontario
Carla, you might not even need an appointment for a form. You might just be able to leave it at the allergist's office and pick it up when it's ready. :)

_________________
15 year old - asthmatic, allergic to cats, dogs, horses, waiting to be "officially" diagnosed for anaphylaxis
12 year old - asthmatic, allergic to tree pollen and mold, OAS
Husband - Allergic to amoxycillin
Self - Allergic to housework only


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 5:45 pm 
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Joined: Sat Apr 16, 2005 12:09 am
Posts: 1054
Yes, I should have said that shelled tree nuts could "possibly" be cross-contaminated with peanuts.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 7:04 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 22, 2005 11:39 pm
Posts: 1141
Location: saskatchewan, canada
We are in the same situation with our oldest, and have been told to assume treenut allergy.
This is what I understand (according to my allergist):

Since the likelihood of a peanut allergic child being allergic to treenuts is so high, it is best to ASSUME allergy. If the child has never had treenuts, they would probably not have a severe reaction upon their first exposure. The skin test itslef would be the first exposure, and likely to be negative. The body could then develop the antiboldies to the treenuts. This is why a skin test that results in a negative result, with no previous exposure is not considered accurate. So, the test itslef could be enough exposure to cause the allergy to develop.

I NEVER explain that to people, I just say Peanut/treenut allergy and leave it at that.

_________________
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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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 8:16 pm 
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Joined: Thu Mar 03, 2005 9:38 pm
Posts: 1643
Location: Toronto
Carla, is the school part of the Toronto District School Board? I'm still so confused since we became one big happy mega-family. :roll:

The reason I'm asking is, I have filled out the school forms for my son - his school is with the TDSB. I'm curious about the "Emergency Plan Booklet" that you mentioned. I do fill out several forms. I do get them filled out by my family doctor - but he and I are on the same page with regards to my son's allergy.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2006 9:36 am 
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Joined: Thu Jun 29, 2006 10:21 am
Posts: 64
Location: Mississauga
Hi AnnaMarie,

Sorry for the long post. Here goes! :roll:

We're located in Mississauga so we're part of the Dufferin Peel District. I filled out forms for her last year when she started JK but they were no where near as extensive as this year.
According to the secretary when I picked up her epi-pen in June there are a huge amount of children starting this September with peanut allergies.

My son is starting JK this year and we just received his welcome package and I was very surprised to see that in big black bold letters it states that "no peanuts/nuts, peanut oils or may contains are allowed in the school".

This year they actually call it the "Emergency Plan Booklet" and basically you're just filling out the same thing over and over again. (They put copies in the lunchroom, classroom). We had to put her picture on one of them which they will post in the staff lunchroom.

I just find that it is more organized and thorough this year. But at the same time I find it startling at the growing amount of allergic children this year. Last year my daughter's class had 19 children and there were a total of 4 children in her class including her that had this allergy. :shock:

Her teacher was absolutely wonderful and when it came time for their end of year school trip to the farm she automatically said that I could go. Anyways, the teacher told the parent volunteers that she was carrying the epi-pens and I gave them a demonstration of how to administer it if the need arised .

I was very shocked though that the other children in her class were not wearing any Medic Alert braclets! I really don't get that!!!

Take care,

_________________
7 year old daughter-Allergic to Peanuts/Nuts
6 year old son-No allergies
4 year old daughter-No allergies


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2006 10:50 am 
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Joined: Thu Mar 03, 2005 9:38 pm
Posts: 1643
Location: Toronto
There are two or three things that could have led to the *increased security* (awareness) regarding allergies.

1. Sabrina's Law

2. A pa parent may have gone in and spoken to the principal and set up school protocol.

3. The principal may have dealt with an emergency last year.

*******

When my son started school I thought they had everything set up well. However, we had a problem when he was in grade 1, and I went in to the principal. My plan was insisting on certain safety precautions for my child. She felt it was a really good suggestion, and it is now part of the school policy for all students.


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