Outgrowing peanut allergy

12 replies [Last post]
By daisylily on Mon, 09-18-06, 19:26

Hi. My 4.5 year old daughter is Peanut Allergic. She was diagnosed at 18 months. When she turned 4 her allergist had her blood drawn and skin tested again. She was negative for peanuts to both tests! Before we could have a food challenge, we moved to a different state. When we saw her new allergist, she was shocked that we wanted to continue with a food challenge. She said that once you are allergic to peanuts you are always allergic to peanuts and even if she food tested negative she runs the risk of it coming back. She said that the research just wasn't strong enough to support food challenges for kids with peanut allergy. Is this true? Is anyone else who's kid has negative bloodwork and skin test refusing to food challenge them? Is there a standard protocol for this situation set by allergists? If anyone has any information to help us sort this out it would be greatly appreciated!
Thanks.

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By SharonG on Mon, 09-18-06, 19:28

I am not sure what a food challenge is but our doctor said a peanut allergy is lifelong - they do NOT outgrow it.

Even if her blood work came back negative, I still would not purposely take the risk. I would still avoid peanuts.

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By josh'smom on Mon, 09-18-06, 19:32

I have heard of it coming back but I have also heard of it being outgrown. Our allergist that we just saw said that my son will probably outgrow. His cap rast was 1.2. Sorry I couldn't be of more help. Our daughter we think was also allergic. She would always break out with hives on her face when she had pb or eggs. I didn't know anything about food allergy then. She can eat both without problems now.

It sounds like your child has outgrown it. I am so happy for your little one.

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By McCobbre on Mon, 09-18-06, 19:34

Several on this board have had children who have apparently outgrown the allergy. And while our doctor said repeatedly not to expect DS to outgrow it, recent research has indicated that about 20% of kids do. If they're going to, they tend to by age 6.

Apparently complete avoidance helps.

I don't know if outgrowing it "sticks." I've read elsewhere that it doesn't for some folks.

I would be hesitant to do a food challenge until age 6, though. I wouldn't want to add exposure. And I'd probably get another rast test beforehand.

Do a search for "outgrew" and "outgrow" and you'll see some threads on this topic.

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By 3xy1PAinNH on Mon, 09-18-06, 19:34

I will be interested to see how others respond. The books and literature I have read indicate that 10 to 20% of children DO outgrow this awful allergy.

I have heard there is a possibility of it reappearing, but that to keep that away, the Drs. in the know tell the patient to eat a certain amount of peanut products per month/week/whatever.

A food challenge test is just that. The administration of a small dose of peanut in a controlled environment with medical staff on hand (often done at a hospital) to administer medical care if needed.

I would think this new allergist sounds like she is not up on the latest studies...I would look for another Dr.

JMO

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By josh'smom on Mon, 09-18-06, 19:36

Sharon G,

Hi I think as much as 20% do outgrow. My sons cap rast was 1.2 and my allergist said he would probably outgrow. I am hoping for this.
Nancy

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By jtolpin on Mon, 09-18-06, 19:36

All the OP said, is true.

You CAN outgrow PA. It CAN come back at ANY time.

Testing is NOT 100% foolproof (hence the false positives and false negatives...)

Standard protocol, IMO, is RAST neg, SPT neg, in office food challenge. If THAT is passed, congrats! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

challenge is giving bits of PB (or whatever allergen) little by little.. more by more... until X mg's (or some measurement).

Any doc that says PA is lifelong, is simply wrong. (most of the time it IS, but there is ALWAYS hope, for most...)

Jason

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By SharonG on Mon, 09-18-06, 19:41

Josh'smom:

Yeah I have heard some can outgrow it too - I wonder if it depends on how severely allergic a person is.

My DD is severely allergic so maybe that is why they don't expect her to outgrow it. At age 2 she was a level 35 and at age 4 she jumped to a level +400 (I still don't understand the logistics of what that means).

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By Greenlady on Mon, 09-18-06, 19:52

From what I understand, you can outgrow PA, and if you do, your best bet to keep it from coming back is to eat peanuts!

Sound crazy, but here's an article that references research done by Johns-Hopkins.

[url="http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/medicalnews.php?newsid=16124"]http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/medicalnews.php?newsid=16124[/url]

So, avoiding peanuts might actually make it more likely your daughter's PA would come back - I'd get a second opinion.

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By maphiemom on Mon, 09-18-06, 20:49

I have heard if you pass a food challenge under doctors supervision , that you must eat the allergen at least once a month and on a regular basis to keep the allergy at bay.

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By Mookie86 on Tue, 09-19-06, 03:41

Quote:Originally posted by maphiemom:
[b]I have heard if you pass a food challenge under doctors supervision , that you must eat the allergen at least once a month and on a regular basis to keep the allergy at bay.[/b]

I have heard the same thing.

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By mckennakatesmom on Wed, 09-20-06, 20:05

My 4 year old dd passed a peanut challenge a little over 5 weeks ago. The challenge was done after she tested negative on both skin and Immunocap. She first reacted to peanut at age 2 with facial hives after eating some of a pb cookie. Her skin test at the time was 5mm.

She outgrew egg allergy at age 2. During her challenge, she ate increasing amounts of peanut butter (starting with it smeared on her lips) until she was up to a pretty big spoonful after several hours. She had absolutely no reaction.

She now has to eat it weekly and we still carry epipens everywhere. I do not allow her to eat anything with nuts except under my strict supervision so I can watch for any reaction.

It's so stressful to give her peanuts, and it's always in the back of my mind that it can come back. However, I do believe God healed her so I try to be conscientious but not overly worried. Were it not for the recommendation that kids who have outgrown eat peanuts regularly to avoid recurrence, I would probably continue to avoid the obvious, but not worry about may contains, etc. She's only eating it on a regular basis because she has to.

Her blood test, skin test, and challenge were very comforting in that there was no ambiguity in the results. The skin test had no reaction at all, not even a little redness. The blood test was less than .10, and as I said, the challenge went great also. Her allergist has only done three peanut challenges (including my dd) because she won't undertake it unless she is almost certain it will be passed.

Anyway, I guess I just wanted to say that there is hope, and I think there will be a cure in the next 5 to 10 years.

Shannon

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By Jimmy's mom on Wed, 09-20-06, 21:53

It is my understanding that doctors used to think that PA is just not outgrown, and because of that they usually didn't retest back then. But for at least 6 years (that's when I started dealing with PA), they have known that there is about a 20% chance of outgrowing it. A challenge should not be done unless there is a negative RAST and a negative SPT, and you said both were negative. I also have read that the way to prevent it from recurring is to eat peanuts on a regular basis. That does seem scary to me, but I guess it's less scary than always wondering about unknown, unseen peanut.

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