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April 30, 2007

A Field Trip Without Food Allergies

My daughter and I went on a field trip to the Zoo this week. It was an overnight trip with her 3rd grade class. If you like animals and kids staying up late, this is the trip for you.

Anyway, this trip was remarkably different that the same trip last year with her older sister. Both of them really enjoy the animals and both of them enjoy camping with their old man (c'mon, I'm not THAT old). The difference? This time the daughter I took does not have food allergies. None. Nada. Nothing.

I have gotten so used to traveling with Epi-Pens and extra food (as back-up), talking to chefs and kitchen staff, and checking out emergency procedures, I forgot how easy a field trip can be! Now, for a family who doesn't deal with child food allergies, this trip would have been as tough as any other overnight field trip. But for a dad who feels naked without the fanny pack on his hip (not too flattering when I wear it on my fanny), it was quite a different experience.

When dinner was served (burgers and dogs), there was no concern. "Whatever you want, honey." And when desert came out, "Okay, but only one cookie; we're having smores later."

This trip served as a reminder of how different life is for parents of kids without any food allergies. Something to think about when talking with other parents. Where those parents are coming from is a very different place and we, as food allergy educators in our own right, need to cognizant of that.

Posted by David at 9:11 AM | Comments (3)

April 16, 2007

Prolonged Bi-Phasic Reactions

As you know, I recently participated in a call with group of food allergy bloggers and Doctor Clifford Bassett, Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine and Otolaryngology at the State University of New York’s Health Sciences Center in Brooklyn.

During that call, Doctor Basset mentioned a situation that one of his colleagues ran across recently. A peanut allergic child was exposed to peanuts and admitted to the hospital for the reaction. He experience what is described as a prolonged, bi-phasic reaction.

Now, we all know about the risk of bi-phasic reactions. That is, a reaction that comes in multiple waves or phases. What was interesting about this example was that the food allergic reaction happened over 3 DAYS!

The patient was kept in the hospital as the doctors watched repeated phases of reaction over that time. I've not heard of a situation like this before and it really hits home the need to: 1) carry multiple Epi-Pens and 2) ALWAYS go to the ER after a reaction, even if the Epi and the Benadryl seem to be working fine.

Here's to being prepared.

Posted by David at 8:26 AM | Comments (1)

April 13, 2007

The Link to the Audio Recording of the Food Allergy Call

For those interested in listening to the call with the food allergy bloggers and Dr. Bassett can listen to it here...

This was a great opportunity for members of the food allergy community to get their questions answered by an allergy expert. Take a listen to the call and let us know your reactions.

Thanks again to Revolution Health for sponsoring the call. RevolutionHealth is aiming to be the world’s leading health site by focusing on an engaging design, high levels of personalization, and an unparalleled sense of community. They are a company that’s trying to fundamentally change the health care system and their beta site is worth a visit.

Posted by David at 8:20 AM | Comments (1)

April 12, 2007

Revolution Health Call with Food Allergy Bloggers

Yesterday I participated in a call with group of food allergy bloggers who interviewed a leading expert in the fields of allergies and asthma, Researcher and Clinician Clifford W. Bassett MD. Doctor Bassett serves as the Medical Director of Allergy and Asthma Care of New York, is an attending physician in the Allergy and Immunology Department at the Long Island College Hospital in Brooklyn, and is also on the faculty of the New York University School of Medicine, Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine and Otolaryngology at the State University of New York’s Health Sciences Center in Brooklyn.

The food allergy blogsphere was represented by myself, Allergic Girl, Gluten Free Girl, Allergy Moms, Kids with Food Allergies, Allergizer and the Zum Family.

Doctor Bassett provided answers to the food allergy blogging communities questions, including:

Q: What is the technical definition of anaphylaxis?

Q: The affects of the psychology of allergies?

Q: Food allergy testing resulting in a false negative. Why does that happen?

Q: The future of treatments?

Q: What is a biphasic reaction?

Q: Is there a relationship between genetically modified foods and food allergies?

These questions along with many more will be posted on RevolutionHealth in the coming days. I will post the link here as soon as I get it.

Posted by David at 8:52 AM