Tag Archives: allergy walk

Lessons From a Teen Food Allergy Tragedy

Allergic Living has advice on how to respond to a severe allergic reaction, particularly when to administer epinephrine and seek emergency medical treatment.

At first she didn’t show any symptoms and her mother gave her a dose of antihistamine; but in 20 minutes the systemic reaction began. Her father, a physician, gave her three doses of epinephrine, but it wasn’t enough to stop the rapid-fire chain of events. She began vomiting, her throat swelled to the point where she could no longer breathe and she went into cardiac arrest. She died in his arms.

Natalie’s story has spiked fears among Allergic Living’s readers, in particular parents of children and teens with food allergies. It has also raised questions about just what to do in case of an accidental allergen ingestion, so we turned to two experts for answers.

The key takeaway: you can’t always be sure a mild reaction will stay mild, because it takes time for the body to absorb the food. I was fortunate enough to survive learning that lesson, exactly one week before Natalie Giorgi’s death. All I lost was an afternoon and the $200 co-pay for the emergency room. It could have been so much worse.

In related news, we’re going to be doing the FARE Walk for Food Allergy again this year to raise funds for food allergy research and education. In addition to promoting awareness and research, they’ve been working on increasing availability of epinephrine in schools and providing resources and training for parents, schools, healthcare providers, restaurants, food manufacturers, etc. If you’d like to contribute, here’s our fundraising page.

Originally posted in two overlapping posts on Tumblr (which included the quote) and Google+ (which included the fundraising appeal).

2012 Allergy Walk Complete!

The Walk for Food Allergy that I’ve been plugging over the last couple of months was held this Sunday. We drove out to Long Beach to join several hundred other people in the walk to raise funds for the Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network. You helped us raise $1,342.15, putting our team into the top 5, and the event overall raised $45,360 before offline donations are counted. The money goes to FAAN and their mission to support food allergy research, education, awareness and advocacy. FAAN sponsors a series of these events throughout the year, so if you’d still like to make a donation, you can contribute through December 31.

Because food allergies are on the increase, a lot of the people affected by them are children, so there were a lot of families at the event. I remember last year featuring a stage and information booths for support groups, medical groups and allergy-friendly food companies like SunButter and Enjoy Life. This year they also had an inflatable slide and a rock climbing wall. (The organizer said that they moved it to Long Beach so that they could get that wall.)

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Food Allergy Fundraising: 1/3 of the Goal!

My team in the Walk for Food Allergy has reached 1/3 of our fundraising goal! 17 days to go, and your donation can help us meet it.

Allergies can kill in minutes. There’s no cure yet, and it’s still unclear what causes them in the first place. Please help me raise funds for FAAN’s mission of research, education, awareness and advocacy.

You can donate here.

Thank you!

FAAN Walk for Food Allergy

Research: Suppressing Peanut Allergy

From this week’s newsletter, Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network is funding a study on suppressing peanut allergy. I’ll be walking to raise funds for the organization next month, and this is just one of the reasons why.

We are pleased to announce that FAAN is funding a final phase of a clinical study focusing on the safety and efficacy of oral and sublingual immunotherapy in children with peanut allergy. The study is led by Robert A. Wood, M.D., a professor of pediatrics and international health and director of Pediatric Allergy and Immunology at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore. Dr. Wood’s team aims to better understand the complexities of the mechanisms of desensitization and long-term tolerance. This final phase of the study will enable Dr. Wood and his team to conduct additional laboratory studies that may help researchers understand which patients will respond to these therapies.

FAAN’s Research Grant Program has awarded more than $5 million since 2004 to scientists advancing research in the field of food allergy.

Donate or join our team if you’d like to help!