Can allergy test be wrong? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 10 Old 10-07-2010, 05:37 PM - Thread Starter
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A couple of months ago I took my kids (5, 3) to an allergy doc for testing. It didn't go down the way I thought it would and he basically did that pin-prick on the back thing for eight substances that are common allergens or that I specifically said I was concerned about.

DS's test confirmed what I already strongly suspected, which is that he is allergic to eggs. DD's test showed that she is allergic to Bermuda grass and that she is not allergic to milk--something I had always assumed. She had really bad eczema set in at 3 months old. She was exclusively breastfed. I cut out all dairy, and in 4 weeks, the eczema was totally gone. So over the past 5 years I've alternated between giving her almost no dairy and absolutely no dairy. But after seeing this allergist, I decided to go ahead and let her have milk. It's been 2 months. She is really itchy and has dry patches on her face. She has been sick for a week and diagnosed with an ear infection (I don't think she's ever had one before). The doctor prescribed amoxicillin, and it's a huge dose (she says), but that's because the bacteria have become resistant and it takes this huge dosage for it to work now. I guess I have 2 main questions:

1) Could that allergy test have been wrong? I asked about a blood test, but the allergist kept saying this is better. But then, he also gave me a vaccine lecture (kids are unvaxed) and told me that geographic tongue has nothing to do with allergies or anything else going on or going wrong in the body (I asked him because dd's tongue is white, bumpy, etc., as are mine and ds's). "It just happens sometime for no reason." Now I don't know exactly what causes it, but I feel like his answer was so...flippant, yk?

2) Should I go ahead and give her the antibiotic? She's never had antibiotics before. She complained 4 nights ago about her ear hurting, but she hasn't complained since. Her eyes are runny and crusty, though. I've been using an ear oil with garlic and some other things in it. I've also started her on a probiotic (Bio K). I have grapefruitseed extract around too...should I be doing something else for her?

She's been sick for 6 days which is longer than she's ever had anything, I think. I just feel like it can't be a coincidence that I've let loose on milk and now she's got this crud I can't get rid of.

Thanks in advance,
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#2 of 10 Old 10-07-2010, 06:10 PM
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It's not necessarily that the allergy test is "wrong", it's just that it only tests for IgE allergies (and the skin prick IS supposed to be more accurate than the RAST blood test). It does NOT test for intolerances. And eczema can be caused by environmental or food allergies or food intolerances. And ear infections/fluid in ears can be caused by dairy intolerance as well.

Almost all of us has had that experience with an allergist (and they generally don't "believe" in food intolerances either). I brought my DS for testing and it was negative, so "go home and drink milk." Bad idea!!

If you've found a connection then it's likely it's a food intolerance.

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#3 of 10 Old 10-07-2010, 08:44 PM
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Totally sounds like milk intolerance. I'd take her off dairy ASAP, and give the ear infection a few days to clear up - it may well go away on it's own, and if she's not in pain, I'd give that a try. We've also had a lot of success with garlic oil in the ear, so keep that up too. But getting dairy out might give her body the lift it needs to get rid of the ear infection on its own.

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#4 of 10 Old 10-08-2010, 05:04 PM
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An allergy test uses the one protein in milk that is the most common allergen. Milk contains many different proteins. If her symptoms show up when you give her milk and disappear when she has no milk then she's allergic regardless of the allergy test result. That's what our mainstream pediatrician told us about my daughter.

So try removing milk, but don't rule out using the antibiotics. She could also have an infection.
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#5 of 10 Old 10-08-2010, 08:42 PM
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another vote for garlic/mullein oil its the best!
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#6 of 10 Old 10-09-2010, 08:44 AM
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I recently had skin prick allergy testing done on my youngest, and she only came out positive to potato (out of 40 foods). I also had intra-dermal allergy testing done on her back in April (needle goes just a little deeper), and she came out positive to milk (delayed), beef (delayed), strawberries, peanuts, and barley. She had the intradermal allergy testing done first and ironically I didn't have her tested for potato - ack! That would have saved me a lot of aggravation! We have pretty much confirmed that she reacts to all of these things (eczema around the mouth and itchy skin on her tummy a day or two later), except the barley (she is gluten free).

So in your case, you could just be dealing with a false negative on the skin prick test...
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#7 of 10 Old 10-11-2010, 04:11 PM
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I agree with others that it sounds like an intolerance, but I also wanted to chime in that my DD does not test positive to nut allergies (except barely for walnut and macadamia) but has had anaphylaxis twice and countless other reactions from even the smallest cross contamination. Our allergist agrees with me that reactions trump results!

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#8 of 10 Old 10-11-2010, 11:27 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for the responses! So I've removed dairy. I'll see if that clears up the little bumps on her face and the itchiness overall too. And I got the antibiotics, but I never used them. She hasn't complained about her ears in days, and the snottiness and eye crust is just about gone--that was a big concern for me, since she's had surgeries on her eyes. I'm giving her an herbal immunity booster and lots of liquids. Now if I can just clear up my own sinus infection!
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#9 of 10 Old 10-12-2010, 09:53 PM
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Originally Posted by *mama moose* View Post
Our allergist agrees with me that reactions trump results!

This is what my allergy Dr says also. You are doing the right thing by taking out dairy to see if it helps & keeping an eye on the ear infection. Good luck with her & with your sinus infection.
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#10 of 10 Old 10-13-2010, 10:12 PM
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Get this:
I was scratch tested for several things. I came up positive for carrots, dust, and like 20 grasses, trees, pollens. My seasonal allergies are incredibly mild and I never have a problem when I eat carrots.

I went in because I know when I regularly consume dairy I have problems.
I also get a poison ivy like rash on my face if I eat a mango.
I came up negative for mangoes and dairy.

Pretty accurate, huh?
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