Friday, February 19, 2016

Allergies and After-Hours Clinics...

Today started out like any other day. Eddie and James went to school and work. Will and I went to school. After school, Will and I went and picked up Chick-fil-A and took it to Eddie's office for a quick lunch before picking up James at 1:15 for an allergy appointment. At lunch, Will mentioned he was "fweezing." Lunch is NOT Will's best time of the day so I assumed he was just a little sleepy and we went on our merry little way.

I picked James up from school, went back to Eddie's office to get him and Will, and then we went to the allergist's appointment. It wasn't long, thankfully, before they called us back. James had a TON of allergy testing done last summer so I knew it wouldn't be a very extensive visit. 

We chatted first about the gross nose he's had for a few weeks. She thinks it COULD be allergies or it COULD be a sinus infection or it COULD be residual from a viral infection he had a few weeks ago. Either way, she called him in a very low dose of amoxicillin. His lungs sounded a little wheezy, but he was able to cough and move things around. I got a new inhaler for him a few weeks ago and we'll keep using that as necessary. Following the asthma rule of two, he doesn't need any preventative medicine right now. He's been off all of that for over TWO years! Woohoo!

Asthma is obviously not the biggie with James. Next up, we talked about food allergies. He has still not had another reaction, thanks to lots and lots (and lots and lots) of reading labels. We are label-reading pros most of the time at our house. So here's the thing about James. He always tests positive on his skin and negative on his bloodwork. Always. He is an allergy anomaly. TYPICALLY, bloodwork is right on the money. You can also have false positives on skin so it's POSSIBLE that he doesn't have a food allergy because of those things. BUT, he has had an anaphylactic reaction before. He is sort of a mystery that they don't know what to do with. They don't want to say he ISN'T allergic because he has had a reaction and his skin says that he is. BUT his bloodwork says he isn't and that's normally the correct ruling. 

So. We have a few options. We can continue to live life like we do now where we are checking everything OR we can do a food challenge. If we do it, we will schedule that for this summer. We would take a jar of cashew butter to their office where they are set up for anaphylaxis and he would eat minuscule amounts every 20-30 minutes for about 4 hours  - until he has eaten 3 tablespoons of cashew butter. If, after all 3 tablespoons, he hasn't reacted they will say he is allergy free and that he has outgrown the allergy. If he has a reaction they will stop right where they are, treat the reaction, and then we will continue to avoid it. My concern is that we have conditioned James to believe he is still allergic to something (this was a HUGE problem that our allergist in Macon had...he is completely opposed to scaring a child off of a food) and he will react because he THINKS he will react. Make sense? He immediately said he did NOT want to do it, but later thought he might. We are going to think about it for a while. 

And because I'm on my allergy soapbox, let me remind you that it is NEVER okay to allergy test a child that you think doesn't have an allergy. We have read horror stories about family members and caretakers feeding a kid the allergen because they didn't think the child was allergic. Eddie and I are very, VERY cautious about what James eats so it could be that he has avoided another allergic reaction just because we are cautious.

Moving right along...The boys and I dropped Eddie back off at work and then they wanted a treat. We almost NEVER get treats after school and we've done that twice (because of doctor's appointments) this week. We drove around for a bit enjoying our snack and had a sweet time in the car together. After we got back home I realized that Will was burning up. AWE-SOME. We got in the house and I snuggled him up on the sofa and took his temperature and it was high enough for me to be worried. This is AN HOUR after we left the pediatrician's office, people. Will was exposed to flu on Tuesday at school and again at his well-check so I started to panic a little. I texted a friend that is a NP and asked about the after-hours clinic. She told me that his symptoms just sounded like strep to her but for me to take him tonight because Saturday morning is BUSY. Eddie came home and he was a champ for taking him. (Sometimes it's better to do that job for your germaphobe wife who has already been at the doctor TWICE in one week and works in a preschool. My germ-meter was REALLY about to explode.) They swabbed him and confirmed that he had strep. His temperature was also high enough that they gave him Motrin at the office. (I laughed when Eddie told me he tried to refuse it but the nurse politely told him it was free and so he let Will have it. HA. Typical.) He and Eddie left there and went to pick up Will AND James' antibiotics. Hopefully Will will feel better tomorrow morning or at the very least tomorrow afternoon after 24 hours of medicine.

Whew! What a week! I am so sleepy I can hardly stand it. Here's hoping none of the rest of us wind up sick!

No comments: