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Author Topic: Recognizing a reaction while it is happening??  (Read 749 times)

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Offline Ciel

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Recognizing a reaction while it is happening??
« on: June 26, 2016, 05:20:14 PM »
I think I had a moderate reaction the other day but I didn't clue in while it was unfolding. I tend toward GI anaphylaxis, rarely have outward signs like hives or major external swelling so I am missing a lot of the more typical signs/symptoms. This is what happened:

I had an appointment in the morning. I currently have an ear infection and sore throat so got up a bit late and found myself rushing to get dressed and out the door. I didn't eat breakfast. Halfway there I realized I forgot to brush my teeth so I stopped and bought some tic-tacs. I ate two of them before my appointment and was fine for the hour-long session and on the way home. I ate two more tic-tacs on the return trip. Once home I threw a quick salad together with bagged lettuce, packaged cherry tomatoes, a few chunks of mozzarella cheese from an open package in the fridge, chives that were chopped in my mother's kitchen (I've eaten from the same batch/container at least twice prior), and bottled Renee's balsamic salad dressing.

I normally don't buy mouthwash but I picked up a bottle of Life brand spearmint mouthwash last week and had been using it since. I can't remember if I brushed my teeth before or after I ate. After makes more logical sense, but lately I haven't always been logical so who knows.

After eating I started feeling pain in my stomach/GI tract. I think pretty soon after finishing but I'm not sure of the exact timing.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Gradually I felt a little better for about an hour, but still had a lot of pain, and then it all returned with a vengeance. Except I only vomited the one time. Afterward I pretty much crashed on my bed.

The next day I ate more salad (no cheese this time) and was mildly ill again after eating but only a little bit of diarrhea compared to the previous day. I also brushed my teeth and used the mouthwash again prior to being sick. I might have had a tic-tac but I can't remember for sure.

In hindsight I wonder if it was a reaction rather than a 'disagreeable lunch'. The tic-tacs and the mouthwash both have blue food dye, which I usually never have ... but I thought it was only food proteins that could trigger an allergy?

Also, if it didn't occur to me that I might be having a reaction and might need to use my EpiPen, then all the preparation and education in the world isn't going to help me if I'm not smart enough to use it. I'm still not sure if that would have even helped.

As far as I know I am allergic to peanuts, cashews, pistachios, shrimp and mango + raw eggs (and latex and a couple of meds and possibly other shellfish or tree nuts). I don't think mango or eggs would trigger anaphylaxis.

Allergies suck.

Offline spacecanada

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Re: Recognizing a reaction while it is happening??
« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2016, 10:09:21 AM »
 :grouphug: Ciel.

I am glad you are ok now and can hopefully figure this out.  Have you had all of those items before, including tic tacs and the salad dressing?  Sometimes brushing my teeth before eating makes me feel sick for some reason: the mint mixing with other food tastes.  Maybe it is just an upset stomach.   ???

I have had several reactions that should have Epi but I didn't think it at the time.  It is a scary reality of how anaphylaxis can happen unexpectedly, I think it is all due to something else, I think it is too mild to warrant Epi at the time (despite multiple systems being involved), or I am simply too far gone to put the puzzle pieces together. Or, when I wonder if it really is a reaction or just anxiety making something mild seem worse than it is.  I don't want to admit how often these situations happens to me.  This scares me too.  My allergist doesn't have much advice other than following my action plan and trusting my gut feelings.  My psychologist gave me breathing exercises to help reduce anxiety symptoms, but ultimately tole me to Epi, but sometimes my brain 'logically' thinks otherwise at those times.  (Like yesterday :hiding:) You may want to consult your allergist too.

Nothing really helpful, but know that you aren't the only one to second guess reactions.  It happens to many of us.
anaphylaxis to tree nuts, peanuts, and potatoes; severe dairy intolerance; vegan (preference)
family members allergic to dairy, egg, peanut, sesame, shellfish

Offline CMdeux

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Re: Recognizing a reaction while it is happening??
« Reply #2 on: June 27, 2016, 03:13:58 PM »
 :grouphug:
Resistance isn't futile.  It's voltage divided by current. 

Western U.S.

Offline PurpleCat

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Re: Recognizing a reaction while it is happening??
« Reply #3 on: June 28, 2016, 07:24:51 AM »
 :grouphug:

Allergies do suck!


Can you get an appointment or speak by phone with your allergist about this incident? 



Offline Ciel

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Re: Recognizing a reaction while it is happening??
« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2016, 04:31:38 PM »
My allergist retired, so I just got a referral for a new one. My naturopath didn't seem to think it was allergic, she suggested it was more anxiety and nerves. I was anxious, and I'd like to believe that, but I'm not sure I do. If it were these episodes would be a daily event. Thankfully they are not.

My old allergist told me that an episode I had years ago that was almost identical to the one last week was anaphylaxis. So I'm pretty down on myself for failing to recognize that while it was happening. But still the doubt is there too, if you know what I mean.

Offline Ciel

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Re: Recognizing a reaction while it is happening??
« Reply #5 on: July 02, 2016, 07:58:08 PM »
And now, this:



Note to self to ask allergist - can gluten cause this type of reaction? could it be gluten rather than allergy? (I don't think it was gluten but the rash seems like it could be, so maybe they are connected?)

Also - antibiotics? currently on day 5 of 7 for ear infection (amoxicillin)