Monday, June 27, 2011

Allergy Testing - Blood Results

The last time the girls had their blood tested, the allergist called and told me the results over the phone. Some of Rowan's numbers had gone up, and hearing the results was really discouraging. I'm not a cryer, but after hanging up, I felt tears welling up in my eyes. According to the numbers, they will not outgrow a few of these allergies. And why the heck did Rowan's go up?

The high numbers are burned into my brain, but I kept forgetting some of the lower numbers. We avoid them all anyway, so I guess the numbers aren't really that important. I finally asked our allergist to send us the test results, just so I would have them on hand.

These are the official results. I'm sharing them here more for my own records, not because I think anyone will be all that interested.

Here is the scale:
.35 – .70 = Low
.71 – 3.50 = Moderate
3.51 – 17.50 = High
17.51 or greater = Very High

Casein: >100  (Very High)
Milk: >100  (Very High)
Egg White: >100  (Very High)
Egg Yolk: 44.30  (Very High)
Peanut: 28.30  (Very High)
Turkey: 16.30  (High)
Wheat: 10.30  (High)
Chicken: 4.62  (High)
Pork: 3.15  (Moderate)

She is also allergic to Soy (last round was 4.6 - High), but I didn't see the numbers for this round.
So you can see why I was frustrated. She has a chance of outgrowing Pork. Great.

Peanut: >100  (Very High)
Shrimp: 3.55  (High)
Milk: 3.09  (Moderate)
Crab: 2.94  (Moderate)
Lobster: 2.85  (Moderate)
Almond: 1.53  (Moderate)
Poppy Seed .10  (Low)
Sunflower Seed: .68  (Low)
Sesame Seed: .54  (Low)
Various Tree Nuts: all around .5  (Low)

So Rylie has lower numbers overall, but unfortunately we still have to avoid ALL of the foods on their lists. Kids have had anaphylactic reactions, even with lower numbers. These tests don't necessarily gauge how strong a reaction will be. (In our case, both girls have had anaphylactic reactions, so we know there are certain foods that we have to avoid at all costs). And the higher numbers indicate that they will not outgrow those specific allergies.

Really hoping that the immunotherapy research trials at Duke will lead to something that becomes a mainstream treatment!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

1 in 12 kids may have food allergies

As many as one in every 12 kids in the United States may have a food allergy, according to a new study that appears to confirm that the condition is more widespread — and perhaps more dangerous — than previously thought.

Full story here.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Fenway Park does it again - providing a 2nd peanut-free section this season!

Hurray for Fenway Park! Peanuts were banned last Sunday from an entire 226-person section of the ballpark for the second time this season as part of a growing effort to accommodate fans with allergies.

The seats are washed, swept, inspected, and swept again, adhering to cleaning guidelines from the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, New England Chapter. Signs posted last Sunday made a simple request: “Thank you for not eating peanuts and Cracker Jacks.’’ Last Sunday, ballpark greeters stood at the entrance to the section and acted as peanut police, alerting fans of the ban.

A critical-care nurse and an emergency room doctor stood in the aisle with stethoscopes dangling from their necks and an extra supply of EpiPens — syringes filled with epinephrine to treat severe allergic reactions. The medical staff on duty said they have never had to use an EpiPen during an allergy friendly game, but it offers piece of mind for parents.

What an amazing effort! There are 500 families on the waiting list for these tickets. Read the full story here.

Nearly half of Major League Baseball teams set aside seats for at least one game without peanuts. Unfortunately the Cincinnati Reds are not one of these teams. Hopefully we can change that - please see my previous posts about the Reds and Peanut-Free nights, and join our facebook page!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Organzing Your Food Safely

Organization is one of the keys to keeping your food-allergic kids safe at home. Labeling food containers is something I do almost every day to help identify who can have what. Rowan has her own shelf in the fridge, and I have a 'safe food' chart hanging on our fridge. We have a sitter that comes to our house 4 days a week, and these simple steps help eliminate confusion.

I saw this new product called SafeKeepers on Nut Free Mom today. SafeKeepers are a food allergy solution for organizing your food safely. Plastic food storage containers printed with the universally recognized “Stop” and “Go” signs on each container with matching covers, letting you know what’s safe to eat and what isn’t. And they're BPA free.

48 pieces for $18 plus shipping.
I am definitely buying these!