My five year old son has multiple food allergies; dairy, soy, egg, peanut, tree nut, green pea, legumes, and hemp. Recently he was diagnosed with EoE (Eosinophilic Esophagitis, pronounced: EE-oh-sin-oh-FILL-ick ee-SOFF-a-JIE-tiss). EoE is an inflammatory disease the causes eosinophils (white blood cells) to collect in the tissue of the esophagus (the tube that carries food to the stomach) which can make it difficult to eat solid foods.
|Children’s Hospital – Boston|
After much thought we decided to bring our son back to Children’s Hospital – Boston to see Dr. John Lee, MD. He is a pediatric allergist who specializes in managing children with multiple food allergies and Eosinophilic Esophagitis. He is a clinical instructor in Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School and is Co-Director of the Eosinophilic Gastrointestinal Diseases Program. He also designs and programs two fantastic sites; AllergyHome and EosinophilicEsophagitisHome. All of this AND he has the best bed-side manner.
After discussing our son’s EoE diagnosis and multiple food allergies we decided to do an allergy scratch test to determine if there were any additional allergens. This is done by using a pricking device covered with an extract of the allergen and scratching the surface of the skin on the back. After fifteen minutes the skin is evaluated for inflammation. The larger the inflammation the more severe the allergy.
|Allergy Skin Prick Test|
We decided to test for; Soy, Peas, Chicken, Beef, Peanut, Wheat, Corn, Rice, Oat, Barley, Rye, Turkey, Pork, Lamb, Apple, Potato, Banana, Pears, Peaches, Carrot, Sweet Potato, String Bean, Garlic, Tomato, Orange, Strawberry, Onion, Coconut, Flax Seed, Cinnamon, Squash, and Cucumber.
|Allergy Skin Prick Test on Back|
The results showed a reaction to Soy, Peas, Peanut, Banana, Oat, Carrot, Garlic, Barley, Pork, and Cucumber. The reactions to Garlic, Soy, Peanut, Banana, Carrot and Barley being the worst. (we didn’t bother testing for egg and milk because his allergy to both are high)
So what is the next step for our son??
We will now avoid garlic, carrot, banana, and barley as well as his other allergens to dairy, soy, egg, peanut, tree nut, green pea, legumes, and hemp. We will do another endoscopy to check for eosinophils and hope, pray, cross our fingers, and stand on our heads that we find his trigger for EoE. If the next scope still comes back with an increased amount of eosinphils, then we will take wheat out of his diet as well. Even though he has a long list of foods to avoid, I am soooo thankful that we are on the path to answers and that we have fantastic doctors guiding us along the way. I am also very thankful that the new allergens are easily avoidable.
After all of the testing, the horrendous traffic getting in and out of Boston, and the waiting around…our son still comes out smiling. This kid is truly amazing.