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Specific Food Allergies > Peanut/Tree Nut Allergy

REACTS AND DOES NOT

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allergydemon:
So, I was wondering if anyone has been in a similar situation as I have. I am a parent of a 15 month old Daughter, allergic to Milk,Eggs and Peanuts.

First it was Milk when she was a baby, we noticed eczema and her skin flaking.. then we have given her peanut butter and she swelled up and we got her tested. It came out that she has Egg,Milk and Peanut allergies, now here are the kickers.

During the initial test it was only Milk and Eggs, even thou we came in with the peanut allergy. Then with an actual peanut she did react. That was also not the first time she was given peanut butter, she had it before and no reaction whatsoever. She really loves McDonalds fries and there is milk in it. She eats Cheese and no reaction and other foods she is allergic too but baked in.

Can anyone explain why that is ? why she would react sometimes and sometimes she will not. She was given coconut yogurt and no reaction, weeks later she got coconut milk ice cream and she reacted ( like a she had a peanut) Her reactions are only skin based and last tops 1 hour and her swelling goes back down.

If you have a child with similar allergies have they grown out of them ? can anyone explain why she sometimes reacts and sometimes not.

 

Thanks

rebekahc:
Hi and welcome!  :bye:  I'm sorry your DD is having food reactions - it's so hard when they're little and can't really tell you what they're feeling!

I'll try to address everything you've brought up in your post, but I'm sure others will chime in, too.

1.  Food allergies should not be diagnosed by testing alone because there is a high rate of false positives.  Also, back when my kids were little, our doctors felt like allergy testing was even more unreliable in very young children.  If your DD has eczema, that can also affect the results.

2.  The allergenic proteins in milk and eggs can be affected by heat, so some allergic individuals are able to tolerate baked milk and eggs - the longer the heat exposure the more those proteins are altered.  This is NOT true for peanut protein.

3.  If your DD can tolerate cheese, then I would question whether the milk allergy was a false positive, though.

4.  Most ice creams are cross contaminated with peanuts, so since your DD is peanut allergic you will need to learn about cross contamination and avoid those exposures.

5.  As to why your DD did not react the first time she had peanut - the first exposure to an allergen often will not cause a reaction because the person is not sensitized.  Only after a person has been exposed can she become sensitized and begin to react.  Also, people can develop allergies at any time - even after decades of not being allergic to a food.

6.  If your DD eats something and has skin symptoms in places the food did not touch, then that is a systemic reaction and could be very serious.  If her skin is swelling, so could her throat or lungs and she's not old enough to tell you what's going on inside.  I would strongly urge you to see a pediatric allergist and get an action plan for recognizing and treating reactions (and also to help you figure out what her true allergies are). 

7.  Many children outgrow milk and egg allergies, but I think the number who outgrow peanut allergy is lower.  A pediatric allergist will be able to guide you as to the likelyhood of your DD outgrowing some or all of her allergies based on test numbers, reaction history, etc.

There is a steep learning curve when first having to deal with food allergies, but it gets better!  :yes:

allergydemon:
Hey, thanks for the reply.

we have seen an allergy specialist. We have done 2 prick tests so far. first results were an allergy to eggs/milk and some dust mite. No peanut allergies even thou we came in because she reacted to peanut butter. The second test showed a reaction to peanuts/eggs but the milk was much lower than the last time. apparently the milk allergy was worse the first time than the egg, seems to have gotten better.

When she was tested the 2 times, the Allergist said there was no swelling or breathing issues associated with her reactions and that its only skin related (eczema) we were given an epipen just in case.

When I meant by swelling was puffiness around the eyes and mouth, but mostly red.. as if she got some a bunch of hives and not one big swell up. Her mood does not change, as if she is not in any discomfort.

like I said, she has gold fish and no reaction, McDonalds fries has milk in it and no reaction.. pizza with cheese on it and no reaction. I have also given her Mac n Cheese to taste and no reaction.

Now the eczema on her skin was mentioned it could be a result of the dust mites as we have carpet everywhere (currently renting)

she will react to tomatoes but only on places where it touches her, so around her lips and such, but I was told that is just he acid and its normal.. she does not react when we give her spaghetti sauce or anything else like that.

How accurate is the 25% chance of her outgrowing  the peanut allergy ? I was told she is allergic to only 1 protein in the peanut. Its why she did not react the first time, or the fact she did not react to the synthetic prick she had.

thanks for reading

PurpleCat:
Does your allergist specialize in food allergies?

Was the testing solely skin prick tests or were blood tests done as well?

Blood test results will vary, every time.  I have learned to be less hung up on the numbers and pay more attention to a trend of the numbers going down consistently.  I also pay attention to the total IGE test results (part of the blood test that shows the overall count in the blood regardless of the allergen - it gives you an idea of how much your child's body is dealing with overall and can effect the level of a reaction.)

Reactions and history of reactions will always trump testing. rebekahc explained some of this in her post so I won't repeat.

It is possible that your child has some environmental allergies besides dustmites.  They can make your child more "reactive" to foods at certain times.

For example:  My DD is allergic to Birch trees.  There are fruits, drupes and nuts that are related to the birch tree family.  She is allergic to some of them and she has oral allergy syndrome to others (OAS is not life threatening).  These allergies are worse (meaning she is more reactive during birch tree pollen season). 

Fast forward to today, she has been having allergy shots to some of her pollen allergies including trees, grass and dust.  She recently passed a walnut challenge and is going for a cashew challenge in April and an almond challenge in June.  Being less "allergic" to tree pollen has given her body a break and her body can now tolerate some of the foods it could not before.

By the way, here is a weird thing to file away if you child continues to have a dust mite allergy.  Shellfish are cousins and somehow cockroaches are also related like dust mites.  So when my DD started Kindergarten, there were some days we could not figure out what she was reacting to....until I learned of the dreaded cockroaches and once exterminated...and her classroom cleaned, voila!  Like magic!  (gross, I know....but....little things...)

Now my DD is allergic to shellfish....except she can eat shrimp and does eat shrimp.  Why?  who knows.  The others cause anaphylaxis.

My DD tests not allergic to mollusks, however, she has had anaphylaxis to clams and can not eat them.  She eats scallops all the time!

My DD tests allergic to apples....except she eats them all the time.


There is no black and white answer to our allergy mysteries.  Hang around here and learn from some very experienced people and keep your DD's history, written down somewhere to help guide you.  It's an interesting journey that does get easier as we get educated and as our children grow up and can self advocate as well as actually tell us what is going on and how they are feeling.

Welcome to our group!

GoingNuts:
Welcome Allergydemon!

You've gotten great advice above, so I won't repeat.

What I would suggest is to start keeping a record of everything she eats, whether she reacts, how long after eating, and what the reaction is.  Also observe what else is going on.  Is she sick?  Exposed to other things that she could be allergic to in the environment?

As PurpleCat mentioned, it may be that her "allergy cup" is full at times, and those are the times she reacts.  For example, if she was exposed to lots of dust mites, pollen, animal dander, etc. that she is allergic to and then eats one of those foods you mentioned, that may be the time she reacts.  OTOH, she may be able to tolerate them at other times because her immune system isn't under stress.

Please understand, I wouldn't  advise that you experiment to see what can make her react.  BTW, did your allergist mention which peanut protein she is allergic to?  Component testing is very new and many of our kids haven't had it yet, so you may be able to teach us something!  :)

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