New to PA world...Our story

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All of this occurred about 2 weeks ago, but Dr appt was just last week so we are "fresh" to the whole PA world and finding it overwhelming due to steep learning curve. But, here's our story.

Our son Brody is 3yrs old and never "liked" PB or anything with nuts. At first bite of anything with PB in it, he's spit out out immediately, cough, and say his "tummy" hurt. At first we passed this off as a minor 2-3yr old tantrum complete with acting coughing fits (they seemed fake, like when acting). Only when he drank a sip of PB smoothie at local fitness club did we notice he may be allergic. When he took a sip of the PB smoothie, he started coughing and crying which we assumed as a 3yr old fit again (am sure you all know those). No hives, no swelling, so we assumed it was his dislike of PB. His crying led to screaming and coughing was more persistent. Taking him out of the gym, we promised him something to help get the "taste" out of his mouth as he was crying saying his tummy hurt and he didn't like PB. Once in the van, his coughing stopped and we turned around to see our little boy turning bright red, not breathing and choking, eyes bulging....what seemed like minutes was actually seconds but he started vomiting which was actually a relief for us as this meant he could breathe. We cleaned him up, gave him some juice and took him home where he didn't feel good and slept most of the day.

The next day we called for an appt with an allergist who did some skin tests. Unfortunately I wasnt' there but my wife explained it all to me. I guess the Dr was supposed to wait 20 minutes after administering the peanut allergy test but after 5 minutes his back was bad and she confirmed his allergy. So, he's PA and trace TN (whatever trace means, I'm not sure). Sent us home with EpiPen Jr prescriptions and told us to use them, call 911 and that's it. No more info, no good lucks, no more testing. Need to call back and set up an hour info session with the allergist and potentially ask for additional testing to find out if he's allergic to anything else.

We felt horrible that our son was in pain, suffering from his throat potentially closing up and stomach cramps, and we just passed it off as him being finicky. He never had hives or swelling, or if he did, we never noticed. But now we're starting to learn as much as possible about his allergy to ensure he is safe yet comfortable...never again will we pass off any reaction (small or large) as the old "it's just him" reaction. Our 1yr old son isn't PA, but we've cut out all nuts from our environment. May have the baby tested to find out if he has any allergies too.

One question I do have is, what's allergic and what's anaphylactic? We're getting him a bracelet and that's a question they asked. Felt dumb saying..."um...I dunno".

On May 27, 2004

I'm sorry to hear about your son. If you click on the following link you'll find a Dr. Sampson article that explains anaphylaxis: [url="http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/vol111/issue6/index.shtml#SU."]http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/vol111/issue6/index.shtml#SU.[/url]

It sounds like your son had an anaphylactic reaction. Basically, this means a life-threatening reaction vs. the milder allergic reactions he had in the past.

There's a chance that any future reactions will be even worse, so I encourage you to carry the Epipen at all times, as well as educate yourself and your families about the allergy, risk for cross-contamination, etc. This website is a great website. I'm glad you found it.

On May 27, 2004

jinxed, welcome! I'm sorry that you have to join us, but you will find lots of information here. Don't be too hard on yourselves. You seem to be doing everything you can now, and your son is ok. And as scary as that was, you know how to prevent it now.

I agree, it sounds like your son did have an anaphylactic reaction. Even if it wasn't his next one could be, so I would put ana. on the bracelet.

Be sure to ask any questions here, you will get a lot of help to get you through this. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

On May 27, 2004

Welcome jinxed!

Sorry your son is allergic, this board is a great resource. I too am looking into a medic alert bracelet for my son and I've read some other postings on this on this site.

One post stuck out in my mind: a stranger may not know what anaphylactic is. Life threatening allergy might be a better description.

There's a ton of information to absorb, you'll find some of it conflicting and frustrating, but we're all here to help each other. I found The Parent's Guide to Food Allergies by Marianne Barber very helpful too, along with foodallergy.org.

Good luck!

------------------ Meg, mom to: Matt 2 yrs. PA,MA,EA Sean 2 yrs. NKA

On May 27, 2004

Thanks for the warm welcome. We've been trying to read everything in site. Even went on a small shopping spree with some EpiPen holders (easier to carry), books to educate, and even the kids books (Allie the Allergic Elephant, and No Nuts for Me).

Was reading posts on the Medic Alert bracelet and wording as well. As much as I'd like to put Anaphylactic on the bracelet, I had no idea what that meant prior to this experience...not sure others will either. Thought about putting Severe Allergy or Life Threatening on the bracelet, along with Use EpiPen. Even thought of buying two of them (one silver, one sport) for Brody, and Daddy will get an off-brand one so we can be bracelet buddies. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

Any other books or sites to visit? Seen many food allergy sites but not many with discussion boards or forums. Any ideas? Looking forward to leveraging all the expertise you all might have, and expect me and my wife to bombard everyone with questions!!! Thanks everyone...

On May 27, 2004

Hi Jinxed and welcome to the board.

Regarding the wording on medic-alerts, mine says "Anaphylactic Allergy to Peanuts and Sesame Seed. Carries epi-pen."

And don't feel bad about not realizing your son's hatred of pb was an allergy. Recently my 6 year old broke his elbow. We didn't take him to the hospital until the next day because nothing seemed broken (he could even print with that hand) and we thought he was just *going for an Oscar*.

Now that you know you are doing everything you can to educate yourself and keep your children safe. That's what matters. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

On May 27, 2004

I really recommend "The Peanut Allergy Answer Book" as an introductory book. It covers all the basics and is pretty concise.

On May 28, 2004

Yeah, we got the Peanut Allergy Answer Book from the library and it's on order at bookstore too. Also picked up another about allergies at library and 2 more on order at bookstore (sorry, can't remember titles).

Just started the Peanu Allergy Answer Book last night, hopefully I'll finish this weekend after kids go to bed!

On May 28, 2004

jinxed, sorry to hear about what you went through,but a brighter side is this. Now you know and are learning about how to protect him. My son just turned 18 a week ago. He has always been allergic and is a wonderful heatlthy child. Good luck claire

On Jun 23, 2004

Subscribing to the FAAN([url]http://www.foodallergy.org/[/url]) email list for alerts would be a good idea. You get emails about mistakes in labelling and recalls of food products.

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