Excema need help/advice ??

Posted on: Sun, 06/17/2007 - 10:56am
Sarahb's picture
Joined: 01/22/2007 - 09:00

My DS was sick all last week with what wasn't strep but they thought could be mono but he seems to be over it now. He had a fever for 5-6 days that peeked at 103.5 and his throat was "AWFUL" (quoting the doc).

BUT he wasn't itchy. At all. All week. And we stopped giving him Claritin while he was sick. As soon as he got mostly better he started itching again.

DH wonders if the the fever and whatever virus he had distracted his body from being itchy or making itchy spots. I wonder if not eating had anything to do with it. He ate very little - mostly yougurt, cheese, and small amounts of mac n cheese.

I am afraid that wheat might be a trigger. We have already ID'd egg and eliminated that pretty easily from his diet. But wheat? today I made EGG (edited for error) free waffles - served with strawberries and home made maple syrup and after eating he was itchy and his cheeks were redish.

His itchyness is really mild - well I mean he doesn't have any real hot spots but he always seems to be touching his face, scratching his nose, and does get little red spots. Nothing weapy or cracked or even dry. They look more like flea bites but are mostly under the skin.

Are there any tests to show what triggers this? If say wheat does trigger it....is that an acceptable trade off? Is there a way to see if there is anything else going on? I mean....if wheat makes him itchy and we decide that we can live with that could there be an internal reaction that we aren't seeing?

This board has been SOOOOOOOO much help to me I can't even say....is there one like this for excema?

Any help, advice, tips, etc would be appreciated.

The only other trigger that we have noticed is when he gets hot from activity. He will be 4 in October.

[This message has been edited by Sarahb (edited June 17, 2007).]

Posted on: Sun, 06/17/2007 - 11:08am
April in KC's picture
Joined: 08/28/2006 - 09:00

If it turns out that he does not have a wheat allergy (IgE mediated) but he still gets itchy in response to wheat, please ask his regular physician pulls a Celiac Disease panel (series of blood tests).

Posted on: Sun, 06/17/2007 - 11:15am
Sarahb's picture
Joined: 01/22/2007 - 09:00

Wouldn't Celiac's have lots of other tummy symtoms and be from birth? He's always beena little low in weight but has had a healthy appetite - few tummy aches (although more recently) and pretty normal um output. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]
My mother swears...that my brother and cousin both had Celiac's as children. I KNOW that you can not outgrow it...but she is convinced of this. They are both in thier early 50's now. I know my brother had a realy hard time eating as an infant/toddler but doesn't seem to have any problems now. Except none of us can eat green peppers.
I'll look into Celiac for him and keep that in mind. Thanks!

Posted on: Mon, 06/18/2007 - 1:49am
lauramacf's picture
Joined: 01/25/2007 - 09:00

My daughter has a wheat allergy. It contributed to her severe eczema as an infant (wheat proteins in my breastmilk), and was the cause of her first anaphylactic reaction when she was 10 months old. She reacts to wheat with hives if she plays with commercial Play Doh. With what you describe I think you have good reason to get an allergy test done, pronto.
After years of dealing with my daughter's wheat allergy, we also figured out that my son also had a problem with it. His gastrointestinal symptoms of "sloppy stools" and extreme gas disappeared whenever he was gluten free for a few days in a row. I thoroughly researched Celiac, and although he didn't test positive for it, I want to assure you that Celiac disease can manifest in numerous ways and there are skin conditions that are associated with Celiac. One of the reasons Celiac is under-diagnosed is that doctors are always looking for big symptoms such as "failure to thrive" or extreme malnourishment. Many people have active Celiac for years before any one gets around to questioning it. It is worth doing some research at celiac.com to get a better idea about it. As it turns out, my son has run-of-the-mill gluten intolerance and his quality of life is better when he avoids all gluten.
So I guess my point is this: even if this isn't an IgE mediated wheat allergy, if you can determine on your own that wheat causes him problems then you might be better off to avoid it for a while.
I'd suggest this course of action: take a break from wheat and visit your allergist to rule out allergy. If it isn't an allergy, just wait a while (for instance, until his skin is very clear and he has no other health issues like a cold or flare ups of seasonal allergies) and then do a trial with a pure form of wheat (like cream of wheat). But, I will tell you that if this is not an allergy but symptoms continue and you want to test for celiac your son will need to be *eating wheat regularly* in order for celiac testing to be accurate. I've never quite trusted the Celiac test results because I'd taken my son off of gluten for a long time, then had to put him back on it for the test. I've never felt certain that he was back on it long enough to build up the antibodies they were testing for. Something to keep in mind.
Hope this helps.

Posted on: Mon, 06/18/2007 - 1:56am
lauramacf's picture
Joined: 01/25/2007 - 09:00

I forgot to mention that if your child was given antibiotics for his illness you might consider that he is experiencing problems due to destruction of the "good flora" of the intestines. When antibiotics kill off the "good flora," food proteins can be incompletely digested and "leak" into the blood stream in a different form than they normally do, creating a problem because the body won't recognize these proteins as they did before. This "leaky gut" theory is apparently given some attention in the mainstream medical research circles. Taking probiotics, or yogurt with probiotics might be helpful for him right now.

Posted on: Mon, 06/18/2007 - 3:29am
Sarahb's picture
Joined: 01/22/2007 - 09:00

Thanks Laura. After reading more about Celiac I am on "yellow alert" here. I *think* he was skin tested (negative) for a wheat allergy but will have to check my records. He may not have been because I never suspected it was a problem.
He wasn't on any antiboitics during his illness. The difference though from not itchy to itchy is really noticable.
I wonder if I should just push for Celiac testing now before removing wheat from his diet. I wonder if my brother and cousin actually DO have it and just don't know it. I know that thier mothers were told that they had it as toddlers/boys - but I don't know how that diagnosis was made.
I have noticed a change in his poop over the last year. And he is pretty gassy but my thought was that was because he always waits as long as can before going. But it is sloppier now than it used to be.

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