Once again, world attention is focused on the story of a 15 year old boy from the UK who died of peanut cross-contact. Rather than focus solely on the incident itself, we’ll highlight common sense strategies to help avoid tragedies like this in the first place.
William Luckett had had his first food allergy reaction at four years old and was diagnosed with a nut allergy at age six. At that time he was given a prescription for epinephrine auto-injectors which he never needed to use. Over time, with the absence of reactions, the family stopped filling the prescriptions.
In December 2012, William was visiting his father on the Isle of Wight and was having ribs for dinner, takeout from a local Chinese restaurant. He began experiencing classic symptoms of anaphylaxis: difficulty breathing and swelling of the lips. Despite his father’s efforts, William lost consciousness and was pronounced dead upon arrival at a local hospital.
SnackSafely.com Welcomes Utz Quality Foods to its Manufacturer Partnership
Products to be Showcased in the Safe Snack Guide and
New York, NY (PRWEB) June 11, 2014
The publisher of the Safe Snack Guide, a resource relied upon by thousands of schools, camps, youth sports leagues and scouting groups nationwide to implement nut-free policies, is pleased to announce the newest member to join its Manufacturer Partnership.
As many of our readers are well aware, peanuts are the leading cause of severe food-related allergic reactions in the US. Though Oral Immunotherapy (OIT) and related treatments that expose the subject to flour containing small, but increasing amounts of peanut protein are showing promise, there is a danger of anaphylactic reaction throughout the therapy.
Researchers at North Carolina State University’s Plants for Human Health Institute are experimenting with new therapy media that combine the traditional peanut flour used in OIT with plant polyphenols found in many fruits and vegetables. When the peanut protein in the flour is bound to polyphenols derived from plants like blackcurrant, cinnamon, cranberry and green tea, they appear to become much less allergenic in lab tests. Tests in mice with a cranberry derivative/peanut flour combination appeared to trigger the desired desensitization without the dangerous reactions that can occur.
California’s stock epinephrine bill, SB 1266 introduced February 21, 2014 by Senator Bob Huff, would make the stocking of epinephrine mandatory for school districts, county offices of education, and charter schools as well as the training of personnel to administer the drug in cases of suspected anaphylaxis.
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!
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