Ped GI wants a blood test - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 11 Old 11-28-2011, 04:03 AM - Thread Starter
 
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DD has multiple food protein intolerances. I have been dealing with it on my own for 6 months, but we are starting solids and I wanted some guidance. Our ped has no experience with this in a BF baby, so I asked for a referral to a ped GI. I really just wanted some guidance, told them both I didn't want anything invasive done. DD is gaining weight just fine and developmentally on track. Of course, that fell on deaf ears. They both want to do blood tests, to identify or rule out IGE reactions. I guess it would be nice to know if she has actual allergies to certain foods, but I'm just so against anything that will cause her pain. The ped GI took a stool sample, using her finger, which caused DD to bleed. It was horrible and I cried (so did DD).

 

So, how bad is it to have blood taken? DD is 8 months. Also, if they are looking for dairy, soy, corn, etc antibodies, do I need to eat those things before the test to give her a chance to react to them so they will show up on the blood test? I keep wavering back and forth on this. DD wants to eat "real food" so badly. I can't eat around her without her lunging for my plate. The only solid I have found that she tolerates so far is yams. Rice cereal, pears, apples and peas are the other foods we've tried.

 

Any advice?

 

Shannon

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#2 of 11 Old 11-28-2011, 06:00 AM
 
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First off, I am sorry. It sucks.  These are the things they don't warn you about when you get pregnant.

 

Next, what were her symptoms that they are thinking IgE allergies?  I would not trust a GI doc to interpret allergy testing blood work. There is too much gray area.  Honestly, if she's gaining and you aren't seeing reactions, I am not sure I would test.

 

Testing for allergies is not very accurate either. Many Doc's are shying away from "casting a net" to catch allergies and ONLY testing when the patient has had a reaction to said thing.  A positive on an allergy test is a 50/50 was to being an actual allergy. If you test for a bunch of stuff there hasn't been an issue with you will often be told to remove things that aren't necessary!  That is not good for anyone and makes you crazy for things that most likely aren't a problem instead of focusing oon what IS the problem.  That said, a negative on a test is something like 90+% accurate, meaning no allergy.

 

So it's up to you! I know for us we did test and I am glad we did.  Within 3 days of removing all allergens, DS was a new kid.  

 

Good luck.

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#3 of 11 Old 11-29-2011, 07:32 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for your reply. She doesn't have any symptoms that would indicate an IGE allergy, other than a stuffy nose, but that's from the reflux. Most of the time, instead of something coming out, it goes up the back of her throat and into her nose. I am guessing the test is to rule out IGE allergies. I am curious about dairy, DH was also sensitive to dairy as an infant, but outgrew that later. Also, I used yogurt to treat what I thought might be a yeast diaper rash and it made her skin really inflamed where I used it. However, I have no problem keeping both of us off of dairy for as long as needed.

 

I am leaning toward not testing. One thing that scares me, on the order for the test, the GI wrote "if sufficient blood", which makes me think it is difficult to get much blood from an infant. She also wants a hemoglobin test because she said she looked "a little pale." We are very pale people anyway. Our ped has been pushing iron fortified cereal because she says breastmilk is low in iron, blah, blah, blah. I've found good info on kellymom about the assimilation rate of iron from breastmilk, and I'm not convinced that iron supplementation is necessary. And, if they do find a low level of iron, they'll want to give her something for it, I'm sure. I am really against giving her any meds that may inflame her intestines more.

 

We are managing so far, as we go along, we find more foods that she cannot tolerate and we quit eating them. DH is very supportive and I have lost some weight, but not too much and not too fast. Enjoy Life chocolate has helped with that, I'm sure :)

 

I suspect a digestive yeast overgrowth might be contributing to the problem. I've cut out a lot of carbs, take probiotics and have started brewing kefir water. So far, this site and kellymom have given me the most helpful info.

 

It hasn't been easy, I have post partum depression, along with clinical depression that I've had most of my life. I get much enjoyment out of cooking for my family and friends, and having to radically adjust what I cook was really difficult. But, I'm getting used to this and we are eating much healthier than we were before. There is definitely a silver lining there.

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#4 of 11 Old 11-29-2011, 09:33 AM
 
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In my personal experience, IgE blood tests for allergies in infants are a waste of time.  DS1 had an anaphylactic milk allergy (bad enough that sitting in an insufficiently cleaned high chair caused him to get hives) and came up negative on an IgE blood test.  Both of my boys have multiple food allergies and intolerances and have never come up with a single positive thing on a blood test.  Skin pricks were vaguely more informative, but in general we found that the traditional allergist route was a waste of time.

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#5 of 11 Old 11-30-2011, 08:40 AM
 
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I am also working through allergies for my 1 year old, and our DO said that they don't run the tests on babies younger than two because their veins are too small.  I have heard of people on here having tests, but it's all within the context of them not working or adding more confusion to the problem. I am going to be tested myself, and hopefully that will shine some light on things, but who knows?

 

If you are really worried about things you could try a total elimination diet and get a really good idea of what is causing the reactions...but that is kind of extreme.  I have been dabbling with the idea of it, and the thought seriously gives me nightmares (I have lost a considerable amount of weight even though I feel like all I do is cook, eat, and clean up).

 

My DS is similar in that he is gaining weight perfectly fine, and his reactions have tended to be mild.  Our problem is that he really isn't eating solid foods....he's very enthusiastic about trying things, but he doesn't swallow them, I think for fear of it causing a belly ache.  So that is something that we are going to have to work on.

 

I would definitely be keeping a food diary if you aren't already and tracking symptoms....for us reactions were always worst on the fourth day after exposure. 


     Mommy to DS born 11-10-10  wave.gifAnd DD born 6-3-13 baby.gif  

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#6 of 11 Old 11-30-2011, 08:54 AM
 
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What your DO said is not true.  They absolutely can test and some do.  I have heard reasons some Dr's don't but never having veins too small.   

 

Honestly, I wouldn't start chasing down problems that aren't there.  A stuffy nose and reflux can be just that.  Again, if gaining fine and hitting developmental marks, I wouldn't worry.

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#7 of 11 Old 11-30-2011, 09:01 AM
 
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Basically what scsigrl posted above.

 

Here was my experience with an allergy blood test (albeit with an older child - I think she was 5 at the time): Took the blood test, came back "borderline for wheat", me: OK, do we cut out wheat?, doc: no, it doesn't mean she's allergic to wheat, me: why did we take that test again?!

 

Your mileage may vary!


Mom "D" to DD1 "Z" (14) and DD2 "I" (11) DH "M"

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#8 of 11 Old 11-30-2011, 09:06 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ragana View Post

Basically what scsigrl posted above.

 

Here was my experience with an allergy blood test (albeit with an older child - I think she was 5 at the time): Took the blood test, came back "borderline for wheat", me: OK, do we cut out wheat?, doc: no, it doesn't mean she's allergic to wheat, me: why did we take that test again?!

 

Your mileage may vary!



Exactly.  If your child is eating something but the test says it isn't a problem, most allergists tell you not to cut it.  Why limit a diet needlessly. That's why they are choosing not to test for a long list of "possibilities" without a prior known reaction.  Too many false +.  

DS tested + for coconut.  He had been eating coconut oil and yogurt.  We pulled it after testing because of GI issues wondering if that was it and sure enough, GI issues went away! 

 

So it works both ways.  Immunology suck at the "science" part of allergies really.

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#9 of 11 Old 12-01-2011, 03:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by scsigrl View Post
Honestly, I wouldn't start chasing down problems that aren't there.  A stuffy nose and reflux can be just that.  Again, if gaining fine and hitting developmental marks, I wouldn't worry.


Oh, we have many more symptoms than that. Vomiting, gas, extreme irritability, sleep disturbances, eczema. The stuffy nose is just the only symptom that I think would indicate an IGE allergy. Yesterday I let her have some pears and we paid for it all day today. I'm just so tired of going it alone. DD1 was born with a birth defect that required surgery at 4 months and a year in an orthotic helmet and that was a breeze compared to this. Just not knowing and not really having much support or understanding is so difficult. Having a day like today makes me want to test just to try to get some kind of diagnosis. I don't know what I'm going to do.

 

 

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#10 of 11 Old 12-01-2011, 06:03 PM
 
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hug2.gif

 

Your right, it is so so hard.  Even having BTDT with my first 2, I am still struggling with #3!  

Honesty, I would stop all solids now till you get to baseline.  Till a year, breast milk is THE thing providing your child with the nutrition they need. The food is just for practice.  Keep a detailed food log of EVERYTHING that goes into your mouth!  EVERYTHING!  Down to the last ingredient.  Keep a detailed log of what's going on with DD.  Poops, sleep, bags around eyes and on and on.  I know we figured out a LOT with our food log.  A LOT!

 

Hang in there.  

 

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#11 of 11 Old 12-02-2011, 07:00 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for your support, I really appreciate it :)

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