Does anyone know how many US kids experience anaphylaxis in school?

Posted on: Wed, 02/07/2007 - 2:40pm
NicoleinNH's picture
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[url="http://www.capta.org/sections/advocacy/downloads/Resolution2004A.pdf"]www.capta.org/sections/advocacy/downloads/Resolution2004A.pdf[/url]

Anaphylaxis from food accounts for 30,000 ER visits and 150-200 deaths annually.

1 in 5 allergic children will have an allergic reaction at school

I am looking for more information. I wish I could find specific numbers for my state or district, but I was told it wasn't public info.

I know the lightening analogy (150-200 deaths annually) was made in regards to the likelihood of our children dying from an allergic reaction, but what about the 30,000 who need to be treated in an Emergency Room?

Are those numbers up to date?

[url="http://www.aaaai.org/media/resources/media_kit/allergy_statistics.stm"]http://www.aaaai.org/media/resources/media_kit/allergy_statistics.stm[/url]

And I just saw at AAAI's statistics on latex allergy: 3 deaths per year and 220 anapylactic reactions. My DD's school is latex-free---A BAN on latex, interesting with these stats.

Come to think of it the hospital I work at uses primarily latex-free products on everyone, yet the nurses & doctors eat peanuts in the main ER station, the cafeteria serves peanut products including having peanuts on the salad bar, and the vending machines stock plenty of peanut products. Oh, the patient kitchen in the ER has jars of peanut butter and bread for sandwiches when the cafeteria is closed.

Perhaps I misread the statistics (???)

Nicole

[This message has been edited by NicoleinNH (edited February 08, 2007).]

[This message has been edited by NicoleinNH (edited February 08, 2007).]

Posted on: Thu, 02/08/2007 - 12:02am
luvmyboys's picture
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There may be a similar number of lightning deaths..I am not familiar with that analogy. But I think it's important to remember that these deaths are among those at risk of anaphylaxis. Since that is maybe 1% of the population, the risk for our children with LTA's is 100x the risk to the population as a whole.
Personally when running the numbers I find the risk of death to our children with LTA is less, but on similar order of magnitude with their risk of automobile death. If stressing the importance of accomodations to a school, I would frame it more this way. When we get in a car we obey the traffic laws(hand washing, approved foods, etc...) and wear our seat belts (the epipen) in case of an accident.
luvmyboys
[This message has been edited by luvmyboys (edited February 08, 2007).]

Posted on: Thu, 02/08/2007 - 12:18am
chanda4's picture
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I agree it can be disturbing when you focus on the numbers. But remember the 1 in 5 example, that can be just simple hives too, the fact of something very serious happening is very very slim. Not saying it doesn't happen, I am just saying it's pretty rare if you think of the whole picture(and if you even want to compare it to lightening, which I know most don't).
And the logistic about all the peanuts and peanut butter even at a hospital, just reminds me even more that I need to really focus on teaching Jake how to live WITH his allergy, because it's not going to just go away(like we wish it would!!!) Just my opinion, nothing more [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]
------------------
Chanda(mother of 4)
Sidney-8 (beef and chocolate, grasses, molds, weeds, guinea pig & asthma)
Jake-6 (peanut, all tree nuts, eggs, trees, grasses, weeds, molds, cats, dogs, guinea pig & eczema & asthma)
Carson-3 1/2 (milk, soy, egg, beef and pork, cats, dog, guinea pig)
Savannah-1 (milk and egg)

Posted on: Thu, 02/08/2007 - 1:40am
NicoleinNH's picture
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Quote:Originally posted by chanda4:
[b]I agree it can be disturbing when you focus on the numbers. But remember the 1 in 5 example, that can be just simple hives too, the fact of something very serious happening is very very slim. Not saying it doesn't happen, I am just saying it's pretty rare if you think of the whole picture(and if you even want to compare it to lightening, which I know most don't).
[/b]
Chanda, 30,000 visits of anaphylaxis to the Emergency Room is not simple hives--30,000 a year. Also, my DD's Allergy Management Plan orders that she receive Epinephrine at school if she has more than 1 hive. Children with a clear history of anaphylaxis often have a plan like hers when they are in a peanut-containing environment. She doesn't have time available to wait and see how her reaction progresses if there is a possibilty she came in contact with peanut. This is due to her history of anaphylaxis and very rapid progression. Hives in school would be a very big deal for her--at the very least she would get an injection of epinephrine, a ride in an ambulance, and trip to an ER. And, I know you have said before that if a kid is "THAT sensitive" then they shouldn't be in school, but to me not sending her to school (and everywhere else in the world) would be too limiting. She has done very well this year with her classroom being peanut-free and next year she will sit at a peannut-free table; I expect she will be OK in that situation, as well. If not, we will have to reassess and plan.
Nicole

Posted on: Thu, 02/08/2007 - 1:51am
Carefulmom's picture
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Quote:Originally posted by NicoleinNH:
[b]I know you have said before that if a kid is "THAT sensitive" then they shouldn't be in school, but to me not sending her to school (and everywhere else in the world) would be too limiting.[/b]
Not to mention the fact that not everyone has the financial ability to homeschool if they have to work outside the home in order to pay for food. It seems narrow minded to me when someone who is financially able to homeschool assumes that everyone else has that financial luxury as well.

Posted on: Thu, 02/08/2007 - 2:11am
NicoleinNH's picture
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Quote:Originally posted by Carefulmom:
[b] Not to mention the fact that not everyone has the financial ability to homeschool if they have to work outside the home in order to pay for food. It seems narrow minded to me when someone who is financially able to homeschool assumes that everyone else has that financial luxury as well.
[/b]
Carefulmom-I totally agree. And, what about the fact that some of us do not WANT to homeschool. I would do whatever I had to do to keep my DD safe, but I would exhaust other measures before homeschooling. I have a few friends who homeschool and they love it, but it is not something I want to do, even if I could.
Nicole

Posted on: Thu, 02/08/2007 - 2:18am
Carefulmom's picture
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Same here. My dd is very sociable and has a ton of friends. She would be stifled in a homeschooling situation. We are discussed a private high school near us where another pa.com member sent her pa child and she really liked it. The high school has a total of 80 kids (20 in each year) and dd has already said that is way too small for her. She would be so unhappy if I homeschooled her.

Posted on: Thu, 02/08/2007 - 2:39am
Naturemom's picture
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Joined: 09/30/2004 - 09:00

It is completely understandable not to choose to homeschool for financial reasons, love of institutionalized learning, or because you just don't want to. The absence of social interactions is a myth.
My ds is very sociable and has a ton of friends. He would be stifled in a school situation. He would be so unhappy if I put him into a school.

Posted on: Thu, 02/08/2007 - 2:44am
gvmom's picture
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[b]I agree it can be disturbing when you focus on the numbers. But remember the 1 in 5 example, that can be just simple hives too, the fact of something very serious happening is very very slim. Not saying it doesn't happen, I am just saying it's pretty rare if you think of the whole picture(and if you even want to compare it to lightening, which I know most don't). [/b]
You know it has been hard for me to figure out what it was that bugged me about the tone of some of your postings, and I think I just got it. You are a "well it is only hives -- let me give him Benedryl and we are good to go". I have never understood the position that a reaction, no matter how slight, wasn't something to be truly concerned over. I have never really been able to hang out with people who thought that a swollen lip or tingling tongue was no big deal.
Each and every reaction can contribute to making their next one full on anaphylaxis -- with all of the bells and whistles. Having "just simple hives" to a certain amount of something enough times (or even one time) could end up anaphylaxis to that same amount the next time.
I think the understanding that the allergy is so arbitrary, that being comfortable with it could be a truly fatal mistake, and that each and every reaction, no matter how slight, contributes to a possible fatal anaphylactic reaction, is necessary to protect our children. It may not be comforting to you as a parent, it may not make your life easier, you may have anxiety, you may end up unpopular with each and every person you come across, but to not make that information part and parcel of how you address PA and your child is really missing something essential.

Posted on: Thu, 02/08/2007 - 2:49am
chanda4's picture
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Okay, I have said if MY child was that sensitive, no way would I send them to school. No amount of precautions would change my mind...just for MY child.
I know you are going to get mad at me for saying this, but not all anaphylaxis and trips to the ER would end in death if your child didn't go. We send them because we are unsure of the outcome of the reaction. My son has had anaphylaxis(throat squeezing) several times and I only used bendryle.....STUPID, I know, I am learning that, it's better to be safe then sorry....but if I would have given Epi and gone to the ER, it would have supported the 30,000 number of going to the Er, but realistically he didn't need to.
I KNOW this sounds arrogant, I'm sorry, but not all reactions are life threatening, a small percentage are, yes....I don't know how to explain myself, I am sorry I sound really stupid here I know....I am reading my words myself.
------------------
Chanda(mother of 4)
Sidney-8 (beef and chocolate, grasses, molds, weeds, guinea pig & asthma)
Jake-6 (peanut, all tree nuts, eggs, trees, grasses, weeds, molds, cats, dogs, guinea pig & eczema & asthma)
Carson-3 1/2 (milk, soy, egg, beef and pork, cats, dog, guinea pig)
Savannah-1 (milk and egg)

Posted on: Thu, 02/08/2007 - 2:54am
Corvallis Mom's picture
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Joined: 05/22/2001 - 09:00

But the point is that some kids are "joiners" and some are not-- it makes a huge difference in how happy they are being homeschooled.
DD for example, has very few fundamental differences as a result of being cyberschooled (versus homeschooled) but [i]she[/i] feels "included" now and that matters a great deal to her.
Her level of social interaction is no different-- but how she [i]feels[/i] is.
Back to the original topic, though... those numbers are scary enough without really thinking about what they mean. Frankly, it is pretty likely that some fraction of PA persons are really at risk for anaphylaxis (though currently there is no way to know for certain who they are)... and therefore, though some 1% may have the allergy, perhaps .3% of those account for ALL of the anaphylaxis events. I [i]have[/i] crunched those numbers, and I estimate that my daughter's statistical risk of anaphylaxis in any given year is about 10-15% (depending upon what you estimate that 'at risk' fraction to be). Risk of death from anaphylaxis is also not equally distributed-- risk factors such as asthma or cardiac involvement, rapidity of progression, etc all play a role. Her risk of death from any given instance is [i]extremely[/i] high given her history. High enough that our physician agrees that we can't predict the outcome. Ever.
[b]THAT[/b] is why I ignore such discussions. Each PA person's risk is different. It is highly individual. Just as an individual's risk of an auto accident is-- this is why actuarial science EXISTS.

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