Bo's new daily dose of peanut flour treatment is now equal to about 1/6 of a peanut. We are thankful that so far he has not had any type of allergic reaction to these initial low doses of peanut.
When Is "Over-the-Top" Justified?
As a parent of a peanut allergic child, if you've ever been told you were being "overprotective" or "over-the-top" with your actions to protectic your food allergic loved one, read on for some validation. A friend of a friend's son was recently accepted into the same peanut allergy desensitization treatment study at Arkansas Children's Hospital in Little Rock that Bo has been participating in for the past year. In fact, they moved from the west coast to TN, to live closer to the study since it requires two hospital visits per month for the first year.
Anyway, on day one of the study he was being given peanut flour in very low, incremental doses to determine his allergic reaction threshold. Quickly, he developed stomach cramps, hives, itchy throat and slight wheezing at the dosage equivalent of less than 1/50th of a peanut (visualize a few grains of sand in a cup)! Benadryl and Epinephrine were administered by the medical staff to stop his allergic reaction from progressing. He has now successfully started his daily peanut dosages at a very low dosage.
Clearly, given the low amounts involved that induced an allergic reaction, we are talking about this young boy having a peanut allergy sensitivity that would be considered a "cross contamination" risk level. In other words, this is a child whose mother, has rightfully been obsessed with protecting her peanut allergic child from bakery products and items "manufactured in a facility that processes peanuts", despite the fact friends and sometimes even family members told her that she was being over protective. Obviously, there are food allergic individuals and situations that warrant so-called "over-the-top" protective behavior despite the social stigmatism and anxiety. So hopefully their story helps validate some of the diligence, precautions and even anxiety that food allergic families deal with as part of their "normal" daily lives.