Confused about skin contact reactions and Milk Allergy

Posted on: Thu, 07/03/2003 - 9:42am
Elizasmom's picture
Joined: 09/07/2002 - 09:00

My daughter rapidly develops hives that spread all over her body if she touches milk, melons, mango, or kiwi. She does not have to ingest it to react. I have always wondered why there is so little discussion of this. Her allergist says he sees it frequently.

Anyway, FAAN's latest newletter has me confused and a tad angry. This group is supposed to be advocating for our children, yet the article I'm concerned about suggests that skin contact reactions are a minor concern and may be just a conditioned response rather than a true allergic reaction. Anyway, I need to talk to her allergist because the article seems to suggest that epipen use is only warranted when ingestion has occured. Her reactions have always been because of skin contact.

Eliza may also have peanut allergy. She will be challenged and touch peanut for the first time when she turns 3. Those of you with confirmed peanut allergic kids have done alot to educate the masses about food allergy and to improve labeling. But, try telling someone your kid could die if they touch yogurt, and how often do you see a label that says "made in a plant that also processes milk containing products". If you have to have a severe, life-threatening food allergy, peanut is the best one to have.

Posted on: Thu, 07/03/2003 - 4:48pm
mom2zoe's picture
Joined: 06/08/2002 - 09:00

HEY...I'm right there with YA! Zoe, who's now 2 and a half, reacts to touch as well. She's anaphylactic to dairy, and has severe allergies to egg, wheat, garlic, cantaloupe and of course PEANUT (and there's more foods). In fact, I just took her today to check out the Montessori school around here and left her for at most 5 minutes to talk w/the school director. When we went to the car, her eyes were so itchy and swollen b/c she TOUCHED the table and some toys (obviously had some food residue) and rubbed her eyes. She also had major itchy skin on her hand that turned into a bloody scratching episode (she has a band aid on EVERY finger b/c she'll scratch them to death when she touches stuff). I DON'T think this is psychological nor a habit that she formed...she's TWO! I have yet to read the FAN newsletter...I don't think I want to do that now either. I do agree with you that peanut allergy is MUCH better publicized than other food allergies. But at least through this peanut allergy, I can educate people from there.

Posted on: Fri, 07/04/2003 - 1:55am
river's picture
Joined: 07/15/1999 - 09:00

Elizasmom, you have a very talented child indeed if she's able to conjure up hives at will.
I'm sorry to hear that she is so highly allergic. Has your allergist prescribed an epi-pen? I think that there are more and more parents who are in the same boat as you where their children react violently to milk and milk products.
Many children outgrow their milk allergies but I don't know if that includes children who react to touch. Certainly your daughter suffers from the same allergic intensity that most PA children do. We unfortunately have that in common.
I'm sincerely hoping that it will turn out that she is not allergic to peanuts. You have more than enough on your plate.

Posted on: Fri, 07/04/2003 - 6:21am
ks65's picture
Joined: 03/06/2002 - 09:00

according to my allergist, YES, children that have anaphalytic reactions to milk (and problems with touch) can outgrow it. My 2 yr old ds has touch senstivity to milk...I have hope. Also, there was someone on these boards that had posted their child was touch sensitive and outgrew it.

Posted on: Fri, 07/04/2003 - 7:19am
ajinnj's picture
Joined: 05/13/2003 - 09:00

My little brother had an anaphylactic reaction from touching milk and was also anaphylactic to egg. Luckily he outgrew both by the time he was 8. So there is hope!

Posted on: Fri, 07/04/2003 - 9:39am
Andrhia's picture
Joined: 06/28/2003 - 09:00

My first cousin had what I now realize was an anaphylactic reaction to milk when he was younger. As a baby, he'd break out in hives if any was spilled on his skin, etc., etc.
He's in his late teens now, and not totally allergy-free, now, but his reaction has been vastly reduced. He by mistake ate a cheese ravioli at my wedding (in his early teens, I guess) and got by OK with just some Benadryl. So even if it doesn't go away completely, there's some precedent for it at least getting much, much better.
Actually, now he accuses his mom of overreacting and dosing him with Benadryl too much when he was younger, go figure!

Posted on: Thu, 01/06/2005 - 7:44am
MommaBear's picture
Joined: 09/23/2002 - 09:00


Posted on: Thu, 01/06/2005 - 8:24am
Elizasmom's picture
Joined: 09/07/2002 - 09:00

I was just notified of the reply to this topic I posted ages ago. Good news! My daughter, Eliza, outgrew her milk allergy. She is eating a yogurt as we speak. We confirmed that she had outgrown it when she was 3.5. I never thought she would. Outgrew her other allergies too, except for kiwi.

Posted on: Thu, 01/06/2005 - 10:13am
Ree's picture
Joined: 12/31/2004 - 09:00

Thank you so much for posting the great news! My ds is touch allergic and everyone is trying to convince my that it's just a contact reaction and not to worry about ingestion. His allergist told me to do strict avoidance, which I do. But, the other day he grabbed my husbands cereal bowl and the milk spilled down his looked like he got burned with tiny hives. It was localized and went away without benedryl fairly quickly. (I didn't give benedryl right away b/c I wanted to see if it would go away.) He didn't seem to care, but I was thinking "he'll never outgrow this." So, thanks for the post - it's given me inspiration!

Posted on: Thu, 01/06/2005 - 12:04pm
Elizasmom's picture
Joined: 09/07/2002 - 09:00

You absolutely need to worry about ingestion! Whoever tells you otherwise is really misinformed. If skin reactions don't predict ingestion reactions, why do allergists do skin tests??!!! An ingestion reaction would probably be severe if he is reacting on skin contact.
I firmly believe that extremely strict avoidance is what enabled our daughter to outgrow it. It is so important. If you can avoid all traces for at least a year, that may do the trick. We found that she could eat milk protein without a reaction when it was baked into things like bread. However, I eventually realized that continued exposure to these trace amounts would keep "reminding" her body of the allergy. When we went to strict avoidance, she did not ingest even a trace of milk. That was sooo hard. Hang in there!
[This message has been edited by Elizasmom (edited January 06, 2005).]

Posted on: Thu, 01/06/2005 - 11:54pm
Ree's picture
Joined: 12/31/2004 - 09:00

Over that year of strict avoidance, did she have skin contact exposure? That's our problem...we never give it to him, not even traces, but my older son eats milk products all day. So, the baby grabs stuff when we're not looking. He never had enough time to put it in his mouth b/c we catch it in time, but gets it on his hands, rubs his face, etc..this is getting so hard!
Thanks for your advice/suggestions!



Click on one of the categories below to see all forum topics.

Peanut Free Store

More Articles

It Is Easy To Buy Peanut Free Chocolate Online

Ask any parent of a child with a potentially life-...

Seeds, such as pumpkin or sunflower, make great peanut or tree nut substitutes in recipes, and roasted soy or garbanzo beans are tasty snacks and...

So many wonderful recipes call for peanut butter. These recipes can still be enjoyed by experimenting with peanut butter replacements.


Peanuts and peanut oil are cheap and easy additives to food and other commercial goods. It is surprising (and alarming if you have a...

Those with severe peanut allergies soon learn to look for the 'peanut-free sign' on any packaged food purchase. This is a notation found on a wide...