Follow Us: Translate:


Loading
 
By: Amy Martin | AFAA Editorial Contributor
On Facebook I found OIT and peanut allergy groups.  I read the good stories and the bad. I looked at pictures of children who had previously been admitted to the hospital due to accidental peanut exposure, happily pop a peanut m&m in their mouth. I saw kids with life threatening dairy allergies eat pizza and ice cream. Every photo made me cry. I could see the potential. I felt hope for the first time in a long time. 
“No! I don’t want to do it! Please don’t make me eat a peanut!” shouted my teary-eyed six-year-old son. I had not even gone into detail about what OIT entailed, but he gathered enough information to draw his own conclusions from what little I had explained.   

Since his anaphylactic reaction from a restaurant sandwich, I had been researching treatment options non-stop for my son’s peanut allergy. Of the few therapies available, this one fit our family the best. Oral immunotherapy (OIT) is the introduction of minuscule amounts of an allergen into the patient’s system, through ingestion, building up tolerance over time. There have been several studies and trials involving OIT over the years, but I wanted a private practice doctor. They seemed to customize the program to the child and go a little slower, thereby minimizing allergic reactions.    

On Facebook I found OIT and peanut allergy groups.  I read the good stories and the bad. I looked at pictures of children who had previously been admitted to the hospital due to accidental peanut exposure, happily pop a peanut m&m in their mouth. I saw kids with life threatening dairy allergies eat pizza and ice cream. Every photo made me cry. I could see the potential. I felt hope for the first time in a long time.   

First, I needed my son’s participation. Then, we had to work out the logistics since there are no board certified allergists offering this treatment in the state of Arizona. We knew we would need to fly for appointments or temporarily move, neither of which was ideal. One of the closest allergists was in Utah, Dr. Jones of Rocky Mountain Allergy.  He regularly commented in the OIT Facebook group and seemed to have a lot of patients in the group having great successes with treatment. He was also compassionate to what we as parents of kids with food allergies go through on a daily basis. I could tell he was someone we could trust with such an important job.   

I went to the Facebook group for advice about getting my son on board with treatment. I can only imagine how hard it is for these kids to purposefully eat their food allergen after avoiding it for so long. It is their poison. One mom of a patient who recently graduated from the program posted a video of her daughter completing her final challenge, eating 24 peanuts at once, after months and months of slow and steady up-dosing, and then launching into a victory dance. I played the video for my son who watched intently and in silence. He must have hit replay a half dozen times. Finally, he looked up at me and said, “I want to do this.”  From that point forward, it was on me to figure out how to make it work because he was more than on board, he was dead set on this. He was ready to stop being scared. He was ready to eat peanuts.
 


Comments

Sue Billington
09/19/2014 1:36pm

This is such a great sacrifice and one of the hardest decision to make as a parent. Looking forward to the day he eats his first peanut!

Reply
Michael Martin
09/19/2014 6:24pm

Tough decision, but well worth it! Knowing in time your child will be safe, is everything!

Reply
12/17/2014 11:37pm

The effort of researchers and experimenters invent the computer. That is developed on artificial roll. Many of cognitive exercise are performed in single computer in very short time. This is the great invention.

Reply
10/14/2015 10:21pm

You took the right way to research allergy treatments on Facebook because there are so much material of allergy treatments is available on different pages of Facebook.

Reply



Leave a Reply