Allergic to Walnuts and Pecans, should we avoid Peanuts too?

5 replies [Last post]
By penelope74 on Mon, 06-08-09, 23:01

I have a PA daughter (12), so we already avoid peanuts for her, we don't have any peanut products in our home.

I also have a 9 year old son who has always been fine with nuts (but allergic to eggs). Last week he had a reaction to a trail mix, so we took him for testing. He tested positive (class 1) to walnuts and pecans, but negative to many other nuts including peanuts. His doctor said that we shouldn't trust the negative result and to avoid all nuts.....fine in theory except that DS LOVES peanuts....we allow him to eat them at school and when he is not with DD....It's a huge deal to him and he has expressed frustrations around having to forgo peanuts at home, so I'm sure he will not be happy about giving up peanuts elsewhere too. Obviously we will do what we need to keep him safe, but I'm wondering if giving up all nuts is a bit of overkill?

She also gave him an anaphylaxis action plan and epi pens....even though he has never had a serious reaction....this reaction was an itchy throat and eyes....what do you think? I think part of my hesitation is that I know what it's like to do the 'epi-pen everywhere I go' with one child and I know how much work it is to tell everyone about the allergy.....and the thought of doing it for both of my children just makes me want to cry!

Any thoughts?

Penny

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By BestAllergySites on Mon, 06-08-09, 23:15

Penny-I'm sorry to hear about this new diagnosis, and believe me, I hear your frustration!

I'm not an allergist so I'm not in a position to dispute what information your allergist has given you.

That being said-it does seem odd that your son 1. eats pnuts without reaction 2. has tested negative 3. your allergist says not to trust this negative test.

Most allergists recommend that those with tree nut or peanut allergies avoid the other because they are often processed in the same facility and there is a contamination possibility.

That being said, if you plan to give your son peanuts-you should find ones not processed in a facility with tree nuts or find peanuts that you need to shell yourself.

As far as reactions are concerned-an itchy throat can progress quite quickly to a swollen and closed up throat. I wouldn't take that lightly. Also keep in mind that prior reactions are no indicator of what subsequent reactions might be. Allergies and reactions can change all the time.

Since you are already used to carrying the epi pen, I would recommend you still carry it. If the kids have the same script-epi vs epi jr-I see no reason why you can't carry one set when you are all together as a family. (I may be wrong though and you should ck with your allergist on that.)

You said "any thoughts?" So I will give you my honest ones and hope you understand....

It may seem like a lot now, and it is a pain and stressful-but would you want to suffer the alternative to not being prepared? In my opinion there is no such thing as too cautious when weighing a child's life.

You are already dealing with food allergies and I'm sure were shocked with that first diagnosis-time will pass and you will come to terms with this and find it's not so bad. I'm sure of it.

If you are really concerned about peanut you could ask your allergist for a food challenge to prove whether your son is allergic or not.

Hope that helps!
Ruth

__________________

Ruth LovettSmith
Founder of http://www.bestallergysites.com/
Your Food Allergy and Gluten Free Guide, and the largest Internet directory of allergy related companies, sites, and blogs.

Disclaimer: I'm a food allergy advocate and mom of a food allergic child. I am NOT an allergist. My comments are based on my research and experiences. Please speak to your doctor regarding medical concerns.

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By penelope74 on Tue, 06-09-09, 00:15

I think the not trusting the negative peanut result was more along the lines of cross-contamination or the likelihood of developing an allergy given his pre-disposition to it.

I totally understand what you are saying, and I agree 100%. My PA DD is so much work to manage...she has really bad asthma. My DS is my easy child...it's so nice to just send him off to play and not even worry.

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By Ashley5473 on Tue, 06-09-09, 02:01

I'm no allergist either, but if he were my child I would always keep an epi pen with him, but allow him to eat peanut products at school like he has been....as long as your certain they aren't a risk for cross contamination.

One question though...did the trail mix that he ate contain whole walnuts and pecans or was his reaction a cross contamination reaction?

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By penelope74 on Tue, 06-09-09, 13:53

The trail mix contained whole walnuts and pecans, also almonds and hazelnuts (and had a may contain peanuts warning).

It was the first time he had eaten it. He had walnuts before this, but fairly infrequently, and mostly in baked goods....he ate one walnut and started the itchy throat, and stopped eating it immediately.

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By Ashley5473 on Wed, 06-10-09, 00:50

Ahhh, I see. In that case, and this is just my personal comfort level, I would let my son eat peanuts as he had been. That's just me, though, and what I think is important is that you find your own comfort level and stick to it. :)

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