Once again, a child’s death caused by anaphylaxis is receiving attention in the media, this time in the UK. The loss is yet another in a long line of horrific, preventable tragedies, but there are lessons to be learned from the details of the child’s exposure and the subsequent attempts at first aid.
Connor Donaldson, a 12 year-old boy from Greater Manchester with severe asthma and a severe peanut allergy, died October 19, 2013 after ingesting a few bites of curry the family had taken out from a nearby restaurant.
His mother had discussed the allergy with a staff member of the restaurant over the phone prior to ordering. She was assured that their dishes would contain no peanuts.
The food allergy community was abuzz last week with the news that Mary Baxley, a paraprofessional at Holiday Hill Elementary School in Jacksonville, Florida, received a 10-day suspension for bringing peanut butter cookies to celebrate a student’s birthday in a peanut-free classroom. But what should parents of children with food allergies learn from the incident?
An advocacy dedicated to improving the safety and quality of life of Californians living with severe food allergies has launched.
California Advocates for Food Allergies (CAFA) was founded by a team of advocates and activists well known to the on-line community concerned with anaphylaxis. The executive board members are:
Chantel Giacalone, a 27 year old actress and model with a severe peanut allergy from West Bloomfield, MI, was visiting a friend in Las Vegas a year ago. On February 20, 2013, she unknowingly bit into a pretzel that contained peanut butter and suffered full-blown anaphylaxis.
“She went into cardiac arrest twice – four and a half minutes both times,” said Maria Lamia, Chantel’s aunt.
Chantel was placed on life support in a hospital in Las Vegas. Thousands of dollars were raised to have her airlifted to a hospital in Michigan, where she was finally released in November.
Are you a parent of a child with severe allergies? Make these New Year’s resolutions and be sure to share with family and friends!
Make no mistake about it… you are on the front lines of a war against anaphylaxis if you or your child have a severe food allergy. Don’t leave your only effective, life-saving weapon at home – because anaphylaxis takes no prisoners!
In yet another horrific tragedy that could have been avoided, 14 year old Emma Sloan died on the streets of Dublin Wednesday after ingesting a sauce containing peanuts at a restaurant.
Emma, who had a known peanut allergy, was having dinner with her family at Jimmy Chung’s Chinese buffet in Dublin’s Eden Quay. Emma’s mother Caroline explains what happened in this quote from the Irish Independent:
“Emma has always been very careful and would check the ingredients of every chocolate bar and other foods to be sure they didn’t contain nuts. She had a satay sauce. She thought it was curry sauce because it looked like curry sauce and smelt like curry.
“I’m not blaming the restaurant because there was a sign saying ‘nuts contained’, but it wasn’t noticed. After a while, Emma began to say, ‘I can’t breathe, I can’t breathe’.”
On Tuesday, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder signed bills into law paving the way for epinephrine auto-injectors to be stocked at public schools throughout the state beginning with the 2014-2015 school year.
Taken together, House Bills 4352 and 4353 provide for the following:
Andrew Turner, a 38 year old music teacher from St Donats, Vale of Glamorgan, UK, suffered anaphylactic shock and died shortly after ingesting wholegrain bread that was likely cross-contaminated with traces of tree nuts. Paramedics that arrived on the scene were unable to save him.
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