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Skin prick testing for legumes

(21 Posts)
trixymalixy Wed 20-Feb-13 19:14:27

That's very annoying. Whenever we've had to take samples in for skin prick testing it has specified it in the letter.

shelsco Mon 18-Feb-13 20:55:47

Thanks for the update Maz. That's definitely worth knowing.

Maz007 Mon 18-Feb-13 19:53:53

Just updating after our appointment today.

Despite checking before going and being told that there was no need to bring anything because they have 'serums for all the pulses', we couldn't go ahead with SPT because we needed to have brought our own samples hmm

Anyhoo... it was a useful appointment in other ways. Most interesting among what we learned is that as others suggest above, reactions to members of the legume family vary, even among different lentil types! So for others in the situation of having to take the sample in, it's worth taking any types of lentil you are likely to come across (e.g., puy, split red etc).

Maz007 Fri 11-Jan-13 07:20:49

This is all really interesting - thanks everyone. I guess it just goes to support that spt is an inexsct science and only part of the picture in diagnosis! TBH often we know what our children react to - especially if we've been living with allergies for a while. If the spt came back negative for lentils for example, I'd just ignore it because I know very clearly that she reacts to them. But they are helpful as part of the picture, when they are interpreted by a competent person (we are very lucky with our lovely consultant).

I think given the different advice everyone has had I'll ring the clinic secretary and ask her to check their protocol so I know what to bring. I will post back with the outcome / advice just for interest as everyone's been so helpful with their own experience.

AngelDog Thu 10-Jan-13 23:38:44

We've had to take in normal foods when they've not been common ones e.g coconut and palm oil. But our consultant has been careful to tell us / remind us about what to take with us.

I've read research published in the last 5 years which suggested that in some cases at least, some serums aren't that good, and can lead to false negatives even though food challenges are clearly positive. confused

greenbananas Wed 09-Jan-13 13:46:51

Hi Maz I'm resurrecting this thread because DS saw the allergy nurse at our local hospital yesterday. He had some blood taken for more RAST tests, and they are going to test for peas, lentils and some beans smile

What's confusing is that the nurse said that using the 'whole food' for skin prick tests is not a good idea, as false negatives are common, especially when testing for allergy to pulses. He showed me the kit they usually use for testing, and apparently it is much better to use properly prepared serums. He even apologised that we were previously told to bring in whole peas and onions etc. for skin prick tests a couple of years ago.

So many of us are being told different things about testing sad However, I got the impression that this nurse knew what he was talking about and was up to date with current research (he mentioned some other studies into allergy which I know were done very recently).

The nurse also said that peas/lentils are different to beans, and that there was a reasonable chance that DS would be able to have beans smile

It will be interesting to see what you are told in Feb - hope it all goes well.

Maz007 Wed 02-Jan-13 19:45:22

trixy ta for the tip. I'll add them to the picnic hamper for our family outing to Addenbrookes grin

karensb Wed 02-Jan-13 13:05:24

Thanks. I will make an appt. trying to avoid going to docs to stay clear of norovirus!! I know he is fine with peanut butter but need to know about other legumes.

How do your dcs react?

He is fine initially except for itching face a lot but about a day gets a terrible blocked nose, wheezy cough, swollen eyelids and cheeks. His throat also seems to be swollen as cant seem to swallow finger food he Is normally fine with and chokes a lot.

That's why initially thought it was a cold but after he had a cold for about a month we realised it was an allergen and tested each food slowly over a long period and it is lentils. He is 8 months but hasn't had many foods yet as needed to find out what it was first before adding other foods. Lentils were one of the first foods he had after basic purées and already vomiting on fish!! Had rough time with dd with her allergies and can't bare thought of doing it all again!! He may also be allergic to dairy, tomato and egg as she was but haven't tested yet!!

We didn't have much help with her and was trial and error but need more help this time.

trixymalixy Wed 02-Jan-13 11:01:41

karensb your GP will need to refer your DC for testing.

trixymalixy Wed 02-Jan-13 10:54:41

Maz, the chickpea looked like a tinned chickpea to me rather than dried , so might be worth taking along a tin just in case.

babybarrister Wed 02-Jan-13 09:26:13

Fwiw my DS allergic to peas and lentils but not chick peas (much to consultant surprise) nor peanuts nor any other legumes ... Total minefield I agreesmile not helped by fact that only test which is 100% is a food challenge as apt and blood tests can give misleading results but heh ho! smile

harverina Tue 01-Jan-13 23:31:41

Maz not sure the answer to this - my DD was tested only with peanuts last year - the consultant asked us at the time if my DD had reacted to lentils and she hadnt ever. I dont use lentils very often however, my DD had eaten a few organix meals containing lentils and we had no problems. At the time I didnt realise the difference between tree nuts and legumes. I assumed a peanut was the same as other nuts blush so didnt push for any other tests. We were just told to avoid all nuts when the SPT was positive for a peanut allergy - there was no mention of avoiding other legumes which I now find odd????? My DD regaulrly has baked beans, peas and I think possibly some other beans when she has heinz vegetable soup.

The whole thing is a mindfield!

ArthurandGeorge Tue 01-Jan-13 18:30:15

Dd is allergic to lentils, peas, soya, peanuts, almonds, hazelnuts and chickpeas. We now just avoid all nuts and legumes. They had the spt stuff for everything apart from chickpeas, we had to leav the apt, walk to M&S and buy our own chickpeas, then go back as no one told us his prior to the apt (even though that apt was specifically for testing for chickpeas)!

babybarrister Tue 01-Jan-13 18:22:19

Look at the NICE guidelines and go armed with them and prepare to be pushygrin

karensb Tue 01-Jan-13 17:38:34

Hi, reading this with interest.

Ds is 8 months and allergic to lentils. His sister is allergic to dairy and as yet don't know if he is as haven't tested it yet. He is sick on fish though so that's out!

Wanted to keep him semi vegetarian which seems impossible now.

I havent been to doctor with this yet as they were very unhelpful with dds allergies and had to work it out ourselves.

However this time I am going to demand some help as he has allergies she didn't. I want a skin prick test and wondered how you all got them and where you go?

Maz007 Sat 29-Dec-12 23:39:27

greenbananas we're due for a review mid feb - I'll let you know what they say. We're in a similar boat with this I think - I'm Spanish so cooked pulses lots ;-) and when DD reacted to lentils we were advised to keep her off all legumes until we see her allergist...

babybarrister Sat 29-Dec-12 14:32:18

DS allergic to various legumes but we just out the hard way - can't particularly see why they should not be able to do spt using legumes but you would need to take your own I suspect ...

greenbananas Sat 29-Dec-12 09:57:33

I'm watching this thread with interest. DS has reacted to lentils and peas, and we were advised (by telephone) to keep him away from all legumes for the time being. That's been really hard to do, because I used to cook with beans a lot before he was born. Also, he would love to eat baked beans and often asks if we can buy some. I've been wondering if we are entitled to ask if he can have tests for baked beans and some other legumes - but we see the specialist very infrequently and last time he wasn't tested for legumes because there wasn't enough blood taken.

Maz I'm sure I have read somewhere on these boards before that lentils etc. are more likely to cause a reaction if they are well cooked.

Maz007 Sat 29-Dec-12 09:38:52

Thanks trixy that's exactly what I was wondering about. I think I might take some lentils and chickpeas along just in case then - do you know if they use them raw or if they have to be softened by cooking so they can scrape a sample more easily?

trixymalixy Fri 28-Dec-12 23:34:10

Hi, DS is allergic to peanuts, lentils, chickpeas. We have never had to take any in ourselves for skin prick testing. They do use the whole legume and kind of scrape a bit off for skin prick testing.

IME they only test for things there may have been a previous reaction to, soi would say you think she reacted to baked beans and humous if you want her tested for those.

Maz007 Fri 28-Dec-12 23:11:29

Does anyone have any experience of this? DD reacted to lentils after previously eating them with no obvious problem. As she is very young we have been advised to keep her off all legumes until she can have tests, and looking back at food diaries she occasionally had one or two hives after eating houmous (possibly) - though she ate lots of it and this was in no way consistent...

I know that for veg and fruit, the extracts commercially produced for SPT are no good and you are supposed to take the actual fruit / vegetable in for testing. Does this apply to legumes or will they have ready mixed stuff to test her with?

Any idea whether they are likely to test her for a range of different legumes to see if some are ok (we clearly know lentils are out...) As her diet is already restricted by other allergies I would love to be able to know if there's any chance of keeping some in... baked beans were such a good quick staple :-(

Thanks for your help.

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