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ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

Are there any Jellies that have tree nut allergies? Do you carry an Epi-Pen?

Asked by ARE_you_kidding_me (6834 points ) May 8th, 2014

I was just unpleasantly reminded of my allergy to brazil nuts. Apparently they are in regular granola bars now. My reaction was hives and vomiting within minutes. I just took a couple benadryl so I’ll be asleep shortly instead of enjoying the afternoon off. I have never had any reactions that I thought were serious but this has me wondering if it could possibly happen next time. Typically it is very small fragments that get ingested yet this is always enough for my stomach to empty its contents. Can a mild reaction one day be ER material on another occasion? Should I carry an Epi-Pen?

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18 Answers

SpatzieLover's avatar

Yes. You should have a pen and an allergy tag on you at all times.

Both my cousin and her mom (my aunt) have had severe, life threatening reactions to both peanuts and mushrooms. Both were already being treated by an allergist. Both had only had mild reacts prior to nearly dying in ERs due to reactions.

My aunt’s worst reaction was scary as it occurred when she went to buy a milk in the school cafeteria (she’s employed at a school). The odor of peanuts….the odor…caused such a reaction she was code blue at the hospital 5 times. The hospital social worker was already in a private room with my cousin discussing her mother’s wishes (ie would she be an organ donor) by the time my uncle arrived at the hospital minutes after receiving a call from school staffing.

I know from my own allergic reactions to wasps (I’ve never been stung, only grazed), that reacts can go from under control via Benadryl and can rapidly escalate to the necessity of medical intervention.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

So you are saying that the same or similar amounts of something caused different levels of reaction on separate occasions? I’m almost back to normal now except the Benadryl is starting to kick in and I’m getting sleepy. I never even considered this to be serious until thinking about it now.

SpatzieLover's avatar

Yes. Reactions vary over time.

One reaction might be mild and treatable with Benadryl. Your next reaction could land you in the ER.

Discuss your reaction with an allergist pronto.

JLeslie's avatar

Yes. Unfortunately, the body often gets better at fighting perceived enemies. Your body perceives nuts as an intruder and sends out an immune response and fighter cells in overabundance causing swelling and other negative symptoms. If your body gets quicker and better at it, each time your response to the antagonist will be worse and more likely to become life threatening.

If you think about steroids help quell allergic reactions, drugs like prednisone and cortizone and steroids also squash the immune system. That is why the are warnings on them about being more susceptible to infection.

Epipen is to open your airway if, God forbid, you have difficulty breathing. It is short acting and you need to cal, or have someone, call an ambulance if you ever have trouble breathing even if you have the epipen.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

Mine’s not nuts, but some kind of nocturnal flying insect. It took a chunk out of me the size of a golfball dimple. The next morning I started struggling and at one point, I was looking at the phone debating for a minute with who to call my s/o or 911 because I was having trouble breathing. Fortunately, I got violently ill. Surprise, super violent vomiting clears the airway. It was still pretty close by the time I got to the appointment with my Dr. I always carry my Epi-Pens. The next attack is going to be worse, according to my Dr.

El_Cadejo's avatar

I’m deathly allergic to all types of nuts, pistachios are the worst for me though. Do I carry an epi-pen? Nope…. Should I? Probably. I don’t feel the need to though because when I eat nuts I know right away, the reaction isn’t bad right away but I get this feeling on my tongue/throat. As long as I take benedryl within ~30 minutes of that I’m fine.

That said, I’ve also been to the ER more times than I can possibly remember for peanut related things because I didn’t get the benedryl in time. When that happens my throat starts closing at first, then I start vomiting a lot, and then I full on hallucinate. It’s pretty annoying because every time I go to the hospital for a peanut reaction they tend to assume I’m just really fucked up on drugs because I’m completely out of it.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

@El_Cadejo Damn, that sounds bad. I usually vomit and then am fine 30 min afterward (mostly). I take benadryl after as a precaution. I’m going to make an appointment with an allergist like mentioned. I have a feeling that there may be some other minor allergy related issues now that would explain some annoying medical things that make me appear (and feel) hypochondriac-ish to my doc. I don’t know If I’ll carry a pen either, I have never had a reaction bad enough to warrant using one. It never fails though, as soon as I drop my guard I end up eating something with them.

Thanks everyone for answering. I’m really curious how many of you actually carry one around regularly though.

El_Cadejo's avatar

@ARE_you_kidding_me While I don’t have a pen on me, I do always have benedryl on me, wither it’s in my backpack or in my car. The way I look at it is that 49 times out of 50 I’ll get the benedryl in time. In those rare instances where I don’t it’s off to the hospital. I guess I’ve just never had a scare bad enough where I thought I really needed the epi pen and couldn’t wait till I got to the ER. I am really lucky though in how I react. I know some people that a few minutes after ingestion are where I’d be at T+1Hr

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

I’m never more than a minute or two away from my pens.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

@Adirondackwannabe How much do they cost and how often do they need to be replaced due to age?

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

They were $37 with insurance. My current one’s were good for two years from the date I got them. I think it just depends on the batch date how long they are good for.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

@Adirondackwannabe I’m assuming you are able to get several? At that price I would like to leave one at various locations.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

One refill is two pens plus a training pen. And they are scary big. You have to hit your thigh fairly hard to get the pen to work.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

Thanks to everyone who replied. I saw an allergist and they found a 4+ reaction to brazils which he told me is the strongest reaction possible. I have my pens now and will keep them close by. He also mentioned that with the reaction I had I should have both used the pen and then gone to the ER, not just taken a couple of Benadryl.

Adirondackwannabe's avatar

@ARE_you_kidding_me Yes, the instruction for the pens say go to the E-R and take the pen you used with you. And what really sucks is my doc said the next reaction will be worse. Be careful.

SpatzieLover's avatar

@ARE_you_kidding_me IMO, You should also carry a rescue inhaler. With that level of an allergy, it is quite likely you’ll react to other plants in the same family. Including pollen from those plants.

Ericales

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

@SpatzieLover Thanks for the reply, it seems pretty specific to brazil nuts. My allergist mentioned that since I showed no reaction to other nuts that it’s a protein specific to the brazils. Most nut allergies involve more than one nut since the most common allergen is a protein involved with germination that is common to many. I have no problems around the other plants in that article. I eat a lot of blueberries.

SpatzieLover's avatar

Again, often as the allergy worsens, pollen will often cause a reaction as will sometimes touching the plants or flowers.

I can’t even water near anything pine/spruce without breaking out in hives.

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