Our family is growing in many ways... Growing in numbers, knowledge, parenting skills, growing in love, in our faith, growing our culinary skills (if you can call it that), growing without gluten (some of us), growing green...........

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Egg Challenge ~ Update

Because of course there has to be an UPDATE... Nothing can ever be too simple, right?

So, if you read the previous post about the egg-challenge, you know that Aiden wouldn't really cooperate. He had some hives where the egg touched his face, but the point was to see if he would react when consuming it. So, we rescheduled for next Feb. Now, while Aiden wasn't going along with the whole "eat the egg" thing, actually spitting out the one real bite he finally put in his mouth...I did manage to get him to eat two tiny pieces. When I say "tiny," I mean they were each smaller than half of a baby pea. Seriously - TINY! But that wasn't enough. He was supposed to really eat the stuff.

This was on Wednesday.

Then Thursday came around. And Aiden had hives. All over. It started out as just a few on his forehead and some on his arm. Maybe 14 total. Throughout the day, they just multiplied, though. I don't know how many times I counted, but I do know that Aiden started out the day reacting one way to the counting: "Let me see how many hives you have, Aiden." "Hives? One, two, three..." He hears the word hives and just starts counting on his own. But by the end of the day, he was fed up with it and wouldn't stand still. I attempted to quickly count before bedtime, while he twisted and turned and tried to get away, and I know there were at least 50, but there were more I couldn't count - not too many more than that, though. They started out on his arms, hands, and forehead. By later in the day, though, there were some on his legs, back, and chest. This was Thursday.

Even on Saturday, he had two bright red ones on his back and some lighter, faded ones still on other spots. It seems that after breaking out in hives, they stick around with him for a while - for at least a few days if not an entire week. Last time we mentioned this to the doctor, he said that isn't really what happens and maybe there was an infection instead. But EVERY time he's broken out in hives lately, that's how it works with him. (And Dr. Google says that can happen. Ok, not just google...I visit reputable sites when I look up this kind of info, folks.) Unfortunately, that Zyrtec he's been on and Benadryl (even combined) seem to do nothing for him. Um, not even make him sleepy. (I mean, come on, if I have to have him on these meds at any time, he could at least experience that side effect and get a good night's rest, right? Nope. Not him.) He also had an allergic reaction while on vacation, and both meds did nothing. And the hives lasted the rest of the week. I feel like I maybe mentioned this in the last post. Vacation post is coming soon. I promise. Sometime being the key word. Soon as I can, though.

The dr that did the egg challenge told us that our regular allergist said just to cancel our follow-up with him scheduled this coming week, since Aiden didn't cooperate with the egg-challenge. But after hearing about this other break-out, the visit is back on. We'll see what he says. We're pretty curious what this really means. Makes me wish the kid had just eaten the stuff so we would know what we're dealing with! Unknowns bug me. Really, I wonder how often this really happens, though, especially with younger children...not wanting to eat the food in question at a challenge. I would imagine it happens pretty regularly. You simply cannot make a toddler eat something he doesn't want to eat!

We'll let you know what we find out.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Egg Challenge

And a challenge it was....

We went to Duke today for Aiden's food challenge, to see if he had outgrown his egg allergy. We were preparing for a long day, as we would have to be there for quite a while. We were concerned he might not even eat the egg, a very good possibility. We were worried he might be grumpy, as the appointment was during naptime (these things are hard to schedule, even months in advance, so you have to take what you can get).

He ended up being well-behaved, despite a grumpy morning at home. He got along well with the nurse and really well with the doctor running the show. He did not, however, eat the eggs. We made them ahead of time and brought other things to eat with them, but none of that helped. When we finally convinced him to put some egg in his mouth, he immediately spit it out. And he can be rather stubborn, so there was no convincing him to keep trying it.

He still ended up with hives on his face, near his lip, where the egg had touched. BUT that's not what was in question. The challenge was to determine if he could safely EAT the eggs. We don't really know the answer to that! Who knows what reaction he might have if he ate eggs. (When he had his big reaction on his first birthday, he didn't actually get any of the food IN his mouth. It all went ON his body.) The doctor kept us there until the hives disappeared, which meant we were still at the hospital for nearly two hours. He wasn't all that interested in the movies they had in the room, and it was a challenge to keep him in the small hallway next to our room. He did his best to trick me once so he could take off running in the other direction; he's rather clever... And fast.

So, the plan is to keep eggs off the list and we will return in February for another try. (They also refunded our specialist co-pay, which was nice, since it's not especially cheap.) We asked about bringing in a muffin or something with egg cooked in it, to see if he could at least tolerate that, in case he wouldn't eat the eggs again (we think it's a texture issue). They have a recipe we can use for that, so we'll make that, along with the regular scrambled eggs they require. They will try just eggs first, because if he can pass that, he's in the clear. If he won't eat it, then we'll resort to the baked good. If he can do ok with that, it will mean he can eat certain baked goods, which will make eating out a bit easier...that would mean pasta, bread, muffins, etc is ok. (Apparently pancakes/waffles would still be off the list b/c of how quickly they are cooked.) Honestly, we've gotten fairly used to not using eggs at home, but eating out is a challenge. You would be surprised at how many places have egg in their bread, dough, and just so much. But really, keeping him off eggs for another four months isn't the biggest challenge, so we can deal with it. We've done it for over a year now. It's not the end of the world.

All in all, this all made for a rather long day with no real answers. (Didn't we just go through something similar...our last visit? Ahhhh...) But it could always be worse, right? Once again, on the way out, we saw another child in much worse condition. (This is easy when you're visiting Duke Children's Hospital, right? That or God is really trying to show me a sign.) Makes me so grateful for how healthy Aiden IS. Things can be challenging and frustrating sometimes, but none of this is really hurting him (heck, in many ways, it's making us much healthier!) and he is still in good health. Many other kids aren't. We'll focus on counting the many blessings we have.