Do you have a plan?

Posted on: Wed, 02/19/2003 - 2:09pm
jussjenni's picture
Joined: 02/18/2003 - 09:00

Hi There!
My husband and I are parents of a one year old recently diagnosed with PA and our allergist sent us home with a prescription for two epipens and directions to use them if he is having a reaction(more then a couple of hives). After looking at some of the topics posted on this site, I am beginning to question my sons allergist. My question is, do most people have more of a plan for emergency? Is it best to give Benedryl after the epi, what is this drug I am reading about that helps with breathing and should I be asking about that? Also, how important is it to have a Childrens Allergist? Thanks so much for any response!!!


Posted on: Wed, 02/19/2003 - 2:32pm
DebO's picture
Joined: 03/15/1999 - 09:00

I would hope that your allergist gave you more information - for example on what foods to avoid, how to read a label, etc. Besides that, though, the "plan" from your allergist is exactly what I would do. At the first sign of a reaction administer the epipen and call 911. At the emergency department they will probably treat with an antihistamine or steroid, but I leave that up to them.
Personally, I have never come across a children's allergist - our allergists have always treated both children and adults. I do, however, think it is particularly important with a PA child to have a pediatrician rather than a family medicine doctor.
With regards to meds for breathing, that is particular to a child with asthma. My pediatrician and several emergency department doctors have told me that most pediatricians will not diagnose a child as having asthma until they are 2 years old UNLESS they have had more than 3 episodes of breathing problems that have resulted in their requiring asthma medication or if there is a very strong family history of asthma.
If your child does not have asthma, this may not be relevant to you. Not all PA children have asthma, although many do. My severe asthmatic is my son, who is allergic to eggs and takes medication twice daily, while my PA daughter has very mild asthma and almost never takes any medication.
Believe it or not, it does get easier to sort things out with time.
Good luck and take care
[This message has been edited by DebO (edited February 20, 2003).]

Posted on: Wed, 02/19/2003 - 11:21pm
Jeannine's picture
Joined: 12/31/2002 - 09:00

We have a Pediatric Allergist at Children's hospital but they unbelievably did not provide much information at all.
It is my understanding that normally during a reaction the Epi-pen and liquid Benadryl are both given. The Epi-pen only lasts about 15 minutes and the Benadryl will last longer. I've also read that if you need to give the Epi-pen you need to go to the ER too. Search on bi-phasic reactions for more information on why and how long to stay at the ER.
"The Peanut Allergy Answer Book" is a good source of information.
I am no PA expert but this site provides a wealth of information and support. Good Luck!

Posted on: Thu, 02/20/2003 - 5:47am
Gail W's picture
Joined: 12/06/2001 - 09:00

We also have a board certified pediatric allergist who is also a board certified pediatric pulmonologist. His office is through our Children's Hospital. He manages my DD's allergies and her asthma. He wants her to have a pulmonary function test (PFT) to monitor her asthma and exam every six months. We still see her pediatrician for annual check ups and any illnesses. But by in large, her allergist manages her asthma and allergies. He is very insistent to give the epi first, but no real "plan" nor information other than a referral to FAAN.

Posted on: Thu, 02/20/2003 - 6:23am
SkyMom's picture
Joined: 10/27/2001 - 09:00

My daughter has had a PA since she was one as well. It was a severe reaction which was very frightening as a first time mom. I can really relate to your feelings and my heart goes out to you. It is quite a shock. My daughter also has asthma. My daughter's allergist has always said to use the Epi-Pen first then her puffer. On a positive note, she has not had a reaction since and she will be five in April.

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