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Old 04-04-2006, 01:44 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Nut Allergies

Anybody here allergic to nuts?

I just found out the hard way that my little brother is allergic to sunflower seeds. He saw me eating them and asked if he could have some.

They are already hulled, so I poured some in his hand (about the size of a nickel) and within 2 minutes he was complaining that his lip was itchy and that his throat felt weird.

I gave him some Benedryl, then tried to call his allergist. They weren't around, so I called his regular doctor.

The told me to give him Children's Benedryl every 4 hours. If he stops eating and drinking, then I need to get him in to be seen.

The sunflower seeds and the Benedryl has since come back up and he feels much better, but I'm now I'm curious as he can eats peanut butter all the time and has never had a problem. In the past he has also eaten things like cashews, almonds and walnuts and they never caused a problem either.

Anybody?
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Old 04-04-2006, 02:12 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I'd say you need to talk to your allergist ASAP about it to get further checked for food allergies. Having something that has that kind of reaction is potentially deadly and certainly something that needs to be checked up on.
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Old 04-04-2006, 02:17 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I do know that new allergies can develop over relatively short periods of time, or just get worse, so yeah I'd probably take him to an allergist soon.

Nut allergies are supposedly the most dangerous kind to have, so you definitely need to find out for sure.
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Old 04-04-2006, 02:47 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I wondered about this... are nut allergies so dangerous becacuse of the allergy itself, or because so many food items are prepared in facilities where nuts are processed (hence the labelling on many packages)? I've never known anyone personally that was allergic to nuts, so I have nothing but a very basic understanding of it.
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Old 04-04-2006, 02:49 PM   #5 (permalink)
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did a quick google on "sunflower seed allergy" and got back this site: (whichis mainly password protected)

http://www.food-allergens.de/symposi...-abstract.html

Quote:
Sunflower belongs to the family of Compositae. The whole seeds are used in breads and for garnishing bakery products or as livestock, bird, and poultry feed. Edible sunflower seed oils are ingredients of cooking and salad oils, and of margarine. Reportedly anaphylactic reactions have been elicited after ingestion of sunflower seeds, sunflower oil, and honey containing sunflower pollen.
About 10 different allergens from 10 to 67 kDa have been detected in sunflower seeds. Recently a 2S methionine-rich sunflower seed albumin (SSA) has been identified as a sunflower seed allergen. In pollen a 34 kDa protein (Hel a 1) and sunflower profilin (Hel a 2) were characterized as allergens.
The present allergen data collection summarizes data on prevalence, symptoms, allergen sources, stability and cross-reactivity of sunflower allergens and their molecular biological and allergenic properties in tabular form.
Sesquiterpene lactones occur in the glandular hairs of sunflower. These substances are not discussed in the present review, but are considered to be capable of inducing allergic contact dermatitis in sensitized individuals.
Sunflower allergies appear to be different than nut allergies (different familes) but sunflower seed oil is a fairly common ingredient in a lot of foods... Having this allergy identified would be important.
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Old 04-04-2006, 02:52 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xepherys
I wondered about this... are nut allergies so dangerous becacuse of the allergy itself, or because so many food items are prepared in facilities where nuts are processed (hence the labelling on many packages)? I've never known anyone personally that was allergic to nuts, so I have nothing but a very basic understanding of it.
Nah, I think nut allergies are generally much more severe than other allergies.
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Old 04-04-2006, 05:37 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maleficent
Sunflower allergies appear to be different than nut allergies (different familes) but sunflower seed oil is a fairly common ingredient in a lot of foods... Having this allergy identified would be important.

What Mal said. YOu can have a sunflower allergy but not a nut allergy. This doesn't mean he's completely safe to eat nuts, but it does mean there MAY be no cross reactivity.


Nut allergies have a tendancy to be more severe al la anaphylaxis, which is why most people allergic to peanuts have to carry epipens with them. The warnings on the packagings are because nut allergies tend to be so severe if someone eats something even prepped with "nut residue" on it it might be enough to kill them.
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Old 04-04-2006, 06:28 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Thanks for the input.

My brother's first dose of Benedryl came up as fast as it went down, so we took him to the E.R. Besides being afraid of his throat closing up, or his tongue blowing up like a balloon, they were even more concerned because he has allergies and asthma.

They gave him Benedryl, lactated ringers and Zantac to settle his stomach them kept him for a couple of hours as 70-80% of his body was covered in hives.

He was able to eat when he got home and is now comfortably lounging in bed talking to himself about the experience of having an IV put in. It freaked him out, but he didn't scream or move so that they would have to do it twice.

We're going to call his allergist first thing in the morning. We requested that he be food tested last year and it showed nothing with any kind of nuts or seeds, but that doesn't mean much as allergies can change as often as every 6 months.

We have a script for 2 epipens. One will be kept with us when we leave the house, the other will be in the house somewhere. These are something we should have around the house anyway as I have loads of allergies and asthma and he has never been stung by a bee so we have no clue how he would react to it.
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Old 04-08-2006, 06:51 AM   #9 (permalink)
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The ER was an excellent choice, especially if the benadryl came back up. Anytime a child is having an allergic reaction and complains their throat feels funny it could be a sign of closure and it's not something to mess around with.
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Old 04-09-2006, 06:47 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I am personally allergic to almonds. I have been tested by an allergist and seem to be just fine with other nuts including peanuts, walnuts etc. Evidently being allergic to one nut does not rule out all of them, but for safety sake testing with an allergist is in order.
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Old 04-13-2006, 02:29 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I'm deadly allergic to pine nuts. I've been to the ER 2 two times now because of them. The first time I had pine nuts the ER doctor told me that if I hadn't taken the benadryl I would have never made it to the hospital. I've accidently taken them 5 or so times since then. I keep benadryl with me in my wallet. I ran into some in Spain on a trip and ended taking 125mg of Benadryl to keep me out of the ER. The benadryl knocked me out for 12 or so hours, but I made it through.
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