Our 14 month old a Class 5 PA and multiple...

Posted on: Fri, 09/27/2002 - 3:46pm
usmcwife4ever's picture
Joined: 09/28/2002 - 09:00

Hi everyone. I'm new here. I've been perusing and absorbing all of the information here, and I'm very thankful for this resource. Our DD who is now 15 months old was diagnosed last month (at 14 months of age) with a Class 5 peanut allergy. She has suffered from excema since birth (I have that too, so out of the three children, it was "third time's the charm" and she is the only child to also have it). Anyway, I suspected food allergies over and over and the pediatrician wouldn't really listen to me. We are a military family, so I called Tricare and got a referral to an allergist, had her tested. They attempted to do the skin test, but because she takes Atarax every night, there was too much in her system and she did not react to the histamine. The doctor wanted to send me home and take her off of the meds for three weeks and then come back. I was really uncomfortable with that, and I really believed that it was urgent (mom's instinct), so I INSISTED that they do the blood allergy testing asap. The doctor did, just to appease me probably, but it turned out that I was completely right.
Here are her results:
Peanut- Class 5 (out of six! :O)
Orange, borderline
Tomato-class 1
Milk protein- class 3
Eggs (both parts of it)-Class 4

Now, this is so incredibly perplexing to me, because I knew she had excema, and I knew that I had food allergies as a baby, and I knew that she was more likely to have them as well. Consequently, I was very very careful about what we fed her. The only way that she would have been exposed to these would have been in Gerber foods (which I now call Allergy Stew...WHY DO THEY ALL HAVE EGG NOODLES IN THEM??????????ARRRRRRRRRG). Maddie has never been away from me, I stay home with her, I didn't breastfeed, and I probably ate one or two pb&j sandwiches when I was pregnant, but nothing that I can remember, so it can't have been that much.

I guess my question is, how on earth can she already be a Class 5 when she has never had a peanut containing product? I purposely kept her away from nut products because I just had a feeling, you know? Peanut butter has never crossed her lips. So my fear is, if she has progressed to this high level without ever ingesting more than trace amounts (which is would have had to be), OMG what would have happened if she had a peanut butter cracker or something? I'm just scared. I mean, the fact that they were getting ready to prick her with peanut protein on the skin test, and knowing what I know now, she would have probably gone into shock right there in the chair!!!

OK, I'm calming down. Anyway, I didn't want to just remain a lurker, but I'm at a loss. There are SO many severe allergies that she has that I have to deal with, but this one is the one that scares the heck out of me.

Any information on how on earth a child could be a class 5 without ever ingesting the actual product?

I guess I just need support. And if you're still with me after this epic length post, then hat's off to you. My DH is gone for six months to a year to an undisclosed location, so I'm struggling through this entirely alone, plus taking care of all three children. I appreciate you taking the time to read this.


Posted on: Fri, 09/27/2002 - 8:53pm
ABreitner's picture
Joined: 07/02/2002 - 09:00

Hi Vanessa,
Wow! Here is the first thing I would do. Go buy this book and read it. It really helped me when my son was first diagnosed.
My son is 25 months and is allergic to dairy, eggs, canola oil, and peanut. His eczema also flares up when he eats anything commercially prepared like breads, cookies, cereals even if there is nothing that he is officially allergic to in it. I believe he is allergic to preservatives and dyes but these are not things he has been tested for. I hear you on the Gerber thing! Egg is in everything and before we knew about Ben's egg allergy I gave him a lot of food that ended up putting him in the hospital with a skin infection over most of his body.
I don't have a lot of answers, I am still learning. You will find a lot of support here. The one thing that I have found is that it does get easier to handle, it becomes part of your normal routine. Multiple severe food allergies are frightening, try not to get overwhelmed.

Posted on: Sat, 09/28/2002 - 12:07am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

I am in the same boat as you are regarding the peanut situation, My almost 3 year old son came back a 3+ although he has never had a reaction and I am really not sure where he got the peanut and I only had a candy bar with nuts every once in a while pregnant, you cannot be tested for a food that you have never ingested because your body has not built up IgE levels to it, I would question the allergist on the accuracy of these test in small children , one post states that her doctor said that the blood test are not as accurate in children under 3.Good luck

Posted on: Sat, 09/28/2002 - 4:32am
usmcwife4ever's picture
Joined: 09/28/2002 - 09:00

Thank you so much for your thoughtful replies. I am really more scared than anything, and i"m trying to become as informed as I possibly can. I guess my concern is that if she's already a class 5 with such minimall exposure, does that mean that I should be more concerned than the average person with the possible occurance of a reaction just by being around the peanut, the nut dust, etc? does having such a high rating on the blood test mean that she's more susceptible to cross contamination than say, a Class 1 or 2? I guess I'm just trying to get a hold of just how concerned I need to be with cross contamination. I am taking every opportunity to make sure none occurs, and have nothing in our home with a "may contain" label or anything that I feel could be cross contaminated (Chips Ahoy, etc), but wondered if that's necessary, since i have two other children who have no allergies. I guess I just want to make sure I can fend off the relatives who think I'm crazy, KWIM?
Thank you all so much.

Posted on: Wed, 10/02/2002 - 4:22am
juliasmom's picture
Joined: 06/11/2002 - 09:00

HI Vanessa - More power to you for insisting on the allergy testing! I know it's really hard to get your feet on the ground when faced with multiple food allergies. My dd is almost 3, and was dx with peanut and tree nut allergies in April. Also allergic to eggs, and has asthma and eczema.
My suggestion would be try not to use up your valuable energy on unanswerables, as far as how she's a class 5 w/o ingesting, etc. You know she's allergic, and as others have said, knowledge is power. I'd suggesting focusing on educating those who need to know, in order to prevent further exposures. Sounds like you are a great mother. Be sure to post here with questions and for moral support! Best wishes for all of you and for the safety of your husband. Mary Beth

Posted on: Thu, 10/03/2002 - 2:09pm
beansmama's picture
Joined: 10/03/2002 - 09:00

My 14 month old HAS had a nasty reaction to peanuts, and her RAST came back a class 2 (at the lab they were done at, the classes are 0-5).
My poor little girl swelled up like a balloon, turned red from hives, head to toe...and her eyes swelled shut, and would not stop watering for anything.
And this is a class 2 allergy!
It was her third exposure to peanuts. Basically, she'd had a bit of toast, on two different occassions, that had PB on it.
I can't help but blame myself because I ate PB like a feind during pregnancy. I was clueless about such allergies at the time. I'm kicking myself now...and I know that if I ever have another.... NO peanuts.
I have a 4 year old who is anaphy. allergic to strawberries. So, I'm not new to the allergies, but strawberries are a billion times easier to stay away from than peanuts.
Anyhow, just wanted to commiserate with you for a moment.
Take care,

Posted on: Fri, 10/04/2002 - 3:11am
McMelon's picture
Joined: 09/21/2002 - 09:00

Hi Vanessa,
I cried when I read your post. We are waiting to see the allergist oct 25. Ped. diagnosed DD class 4 (rast)very recently. She has had several accidental exposures since diagnosis. We had our first use of epi and trip to er last week. I am sure the skin testing will reveal others. My heart goes out to you. My husband was in MC for the first 4 years of our marriage. I am so sorry you are dealing with this alone. I hope you get the answers you are looking for.You will be in my thoughts and prayers.

Posted on: Fri, 10/04/2002 - 4:36am
usmcwife4ever's picture
Joined: 09/28/2002 - 09:00

Thank you so much Kris and McMelon. I so appreciate you commiserating with me. And McMelon, I'm so sorry that you have already had so many incidents with your dear child. My baby girl is having a weird reaction today. She has the hives on her face, the bags under her little eyes, and she's very tired. So I'm watching her carefully. I have no idea what she's reacting to as I thought that everything in our house was peanut free. Although, she has so many other food allergies that it's a nightmare trying to pin something down. I think that all I can do is just watch and see. I'm so sorry that we all have to deal with this, but thank you all so much for the kind words, it definitely makes it easier.

Posted on: Fri, 10/04/2002 - 4:38am
usmcwife4ever's picture
Joined: 09/28/2002 - 09:00

beansmama and juliasmom, thank you so much for sharing your stories with me. It's the unpredictability of this that scares the heck out of me you know?
I wish all of our babies a peanut free day (and life for that matter!)

Posted on: Fri, 10/04/2002 - 6:12am
beansmama's picture
Joined: 10/03/2002 - 09:00

What is going on??? Brenna developed hives today - for no apparent reason. I swear, I'm monitoring everything she eats....and there was no way she had anything that was even a cross contamination risk.
Gosh, is it something in the air?? UGH!!!
Kris and Baby Bean... who is passed out from Benedryl.

Posted on: Fri, 10/04/2002 - 11:13am
Jandy's picture
Joined: 05/21/2001 - 09:00

Hi Vanessa,
You state:
Peanut- Class 5 (out of six! :O)
Orange, borderline
Tomato-class 1
Milk protein- class 3
Eggs (both parts of it)-Class 4
eczema and history of food allergy.
I'm not a doctor or nurse so check with allergist for intereptation of test. I've been dealing with multiple food allergies and asthma in son for 12 years- It is my understanding that high levels don't necessarily mean worse reactions-just less likely to outgrow and more likely to be truely allergic.(child with lower levels can have worse or just as severe as one with high levels.)
My son has outgrown or proven not to be allergic to 7 foods. Wheat was class 4 but he can now safely have it.
Thankfully, because of his eczema we went slow on introducing foods, but I breast- feed changing my diet around to try to help his skin....(thats how,I think, he was sensitized to several foods)....
Protopic lotion has helped my son's eczema greatly- he is just starting to out grow it though most kids outgrow it at much younger age. Some have skin respond well to removing milk from diet...
He still has 5 food allergies. Did you know that smelling some foods may cause problem (aerosolized allergy) cooking eggs, steaming shellfish, baking nuts or peanuts. My son is still highly egg allergic but we've gotten the scores to drop by more than 40 points when we stopped cooking eggs when he is in the house. We have developed allergy awarenes and practises and he has survived.
I have a little fat notebook of his safe recipes to take with me and cooking stuff cube, safe food stash etc.
Take Care,


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