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how to spot an egg allergy?

(15 Posts)
manna Tue 07-Jan-03 14:48:24

I have just given my ds (13mths) scrambled egg for the first time. He ate quite a lot, seemed to like it, then started complaining, rubbing his face etc. He became very red and blotchy, with white raised areas in the red. Is it an allergy? Could it be something else (we were staying in a very dusty house at the time)? should i try again? What are the effects of an egg allergy? he's had egg before, in cakes etc, but never on it's own.

SoupDragon Tue 07-Jan-03 14:53:05

Could be something else or could be egg! If it happened straight after eating the egg then that is the likely culprit IMO.

Theoretically you can't be allergic to something you've not encountered before as it's the 1st encounter that sensitises the immune system. Also, the cakes/biscuits etc would have a lower egg content than scrambled egg (obviously )

I'd go and see you GP, before the redness goes down if possible.

SoupDragon Tue 07-Jan-03 14:54:14

PS Dust allergies usually manifest as wheezing and red eyes. At least mine does! Rather like an immediate heavy cold.

lisac Tue 07-Jan-03 16:33:48

DD, who was then about 11 months, developed an immediate "nettle rash", ie raised red bumps which were obviously itchy, within 5 minutes of touching a boiled egg for the first time (she'd eaten scrambled egg earlier in the week for the first time with no apparent effect). The rash appeared everywhere she had touched with her hands, all over her face, neck etc. It was very quick and very alarming, but thankfully she had no breathing difficulties and the rash subsided after about an hour.
This turned out to be a classic allergic reaction - particularly the nettle rash (urticaria) and the fact that it subsided within an hour. I stopped giving her egg or anything containing egg, and got a hospital appointment to have a skin prick test via my GP, which was positive.
I would recommend you get ds tested, if only to rule out an allergy where possible. Fortunately, dd's allergy does not appear to be bad enough to need an epipen and although I keep Piriton handy, I've never needed to use it (so far) as I keep a close eye on what she's eating.
One thing you will need to think about if ds has an egg allergy is the dreaded MMR, which is cultured in egg. Studies show that there is very little chance of an allergic reaction in children with egg allergies, but recommend that the injection is given where the child is monitored and emergency action could be taken. DD had hers at the hospital's injection clinic and we stayed for about an hour and a half afterwards to make sure she wasn't going to have a reaction.
Sorry for the ramble. HTH

Chinchilla Tue 07-Jan-03 21:12:44

Ditto Lisac - Manna, it does sound like an allergy. The only way to know for sure is allergy testing. See your gp, who will put you on the list, but it takes a while. We had to go to Addenbrookes in Cambridge (approx 50 miles), and it took about 6 months to get an appointment. It was reassuring to know that it was an allergy only to egg, as the tests ruled out any other allergies like pets/dust mites etc. We have also been told to reintroduce egg as a minor cooked ingredient from his 2nd birthday, so at least he can try his birthday cake!

Apparently egg allergies usually go away with age, so it is important not to introduce them until as late as possible. The doctor also said that ds could not have pure egg or mayonnaise until at least 6 or 7, and to wait even then until he asked for it!


manna Wed 08-Jan-03 11:11:35

thanks everyone - my ds's reaction was exactly like yours lisac! I will call gp immediately.

Interestingly, I just yesterday booked ds in for the single vaccines (at a private clinic in St. Johns Wood - £235!!!) instead of an mmr. So it appears at least I have at leaast some reason to justify the expense, other than plain worry

CAM Wed 08-Jan-03 11:46:37

Same thing happened to my dd when first given egg. Red raised areas around the mouth( not excessive but obvious). I reported it to my HV at the time. The blood test she had did not prove an allergy but she was classed as sensitive to egg. Tried her a very few times since and still has a similar reaction. We avoid "neat" egg but she doesn't react to cakes, etc. Probably due to the small amount but in bought products the egg is modified in some way which makes the difference, apparently. My GP did not want to give her MMR but said I could have it, if I wanted to, in hospital. This prompted me into research as I had given all the usual vaccinations previously, and dh and I fianlly decided against it completely.

Chinchilla Wed 08-Jan-03 12:27:47

Manna - just to reassure you re the MMR, my ds had his at hospital, and he was watched for two hours afterwards to make sure that he was OK. Apparently it is rare for a reaction, even with an allergy. However, we don't want to get into an MMR debate again, do we Whatever you decide will be right for you.

bunny2 Thu 09-Jan-03 00:06:59

My son has a severe egg allergy but only to raw egg. He can quite happily eat well-cooked egg but even touching raw egg brings on a severe reaction - perhaos the scrambled agg wasnt quite cooked. The protein in egg changes during cooking and uncooked egg is much mre likely to cause a reaction. IMO the Piriton is a must, the advice we have been given is to give at the first sign of a reaction. Hives (urticaria~) are alarming but the real threat is swelling in the throat. Your gp should be able to give more advice. Good luck

LizP Sat 11-Jan-03 18:56:55

manna, it sounds like an egg allergiy to me. Still check the single measles vacine - I'm pretty certain it is cultured in egg - the clinic should know. DS1 has egg allergies so decided against the MMR and found the single vacine also invloded egg so he has had nothing.

soupdragon - he had definately never had egg before I first gave him scrambled egg - & had anaphylactic shock - so had become sensitised either when I was pregant or in the first 4 months of breatfeeding (when I stopped eating eggs to clear up his eczema)

Corbin Sat 11-Jan-03 21:48:38


MMR is not the only vaccine cultured on egg, and the individual vaccines contain it as well. Here's a link to a page listing the complete ingredients of all current vaccines. It calls the egg culture "chick embryo". The ingredients may put you off vaccinating at all-who wants to inject their child with formaldehyde, antifreeze and mercury?

Vaccination Ingredients

BlueRose Fri 17-Jan-03 13:18:50

Hi manna,

My ds is 2.3yrs has a severe egg allergy & dairy allergy too. Very similar symptoms, as soon as he ate scrambled egg, he had blotches (big red blotches) which started from the mouth then spread all over his body, after a while he went green & was violently sick/projectile vomiting.

This was the first time I had ever tried him with egg & he had already had an allergy with milk - I BF him myself for the first four months and then during the transition to SMA I found similar problems although the blotches were like hives so he had SMA Soya milk until he was 2yo.

If he has part of a cake or a biscuit with egg in he his mouth becomes blotchy straight away (not v severe but enough for a mum to take notice IYKWIM)& I saw my local doctor, he referred us to the doctor at the hospital who advised me to keep him off of any dairy products or products containing egg until he was 3yo.

Apparantly by carrying on feeding your child what they are allergic too, even in small quantities & if there is no obvious sign of a reaction (like he never had a reaction to yoghurts although he has soya yoghurts now) it keeps the allergy alive within them. They are hoping he will grow out of it as his body matures.

Also, when he was a baby he had quite bad eczema and seemed always ill, the runny nose and eyes that you mentioned before which is all part of the allergy. And he never slept well of a night time.

I saw this doctor at the hospital when DS was 14 months old who advised me to change his diet, his diet takes a little getting used to soya margarine, certain meats and crisps, soya ice cream etc but I can honestly say I am very pleasantly suprised with the results, he has gone from not sleeping well to having 12 hours, if not more a night - his eczema has gone - and he is generally well and doesnt have any of the above symptoms any more. Its amazing.

They tried to take blood from him when he was about 15 months old to test for allergies and what he was allergic too - unfortunatley it was very traumatic as he was(and still is) a chubby little boy and they could not find any veins so they tried taking blood from three different areas, then moved on to his ankles and were still unsuccessful - so this was something we may be able to complete when he is a little older, although its very obvious from the reaction. Interestingly enough hes at that age where birthday parties and Christmas seemed unfair and he pinched a choc something or other from the table, not my party (as I try to do food he can eat too) but a friends - and he had runny eyes and nose still so in a way at least I know its still present in his system.

Also, regarding the MMR which was mentioned before, for different reasons I did not want DS to have the triple (which I wont go in to here) although I felt it important to vaccinate him - part of the reason was the triple vaccine is bound together with chick egg - and some single vaccines. My mum and I travelled to London from Ramsgate to get the single vaccines, the doctor administering the vaccine was fantastic and it was a vaccine that was 'egg free' not bound together with chick egg all of which we have documented from them. Although expensive, it was complete peace of mind.

He doesnt seem to have a problem around pets or dust mites etc. The doctors surgery provided me with piriton syrup in case of an allergic reaction to anything else, stings even prickly heat especially useful in the summer.

I dont log on here as regularly as I used to (due to not having a computer! but as I am particularly interested I will try to look out for any replies. I hope what we have been through with the allergies will help anyone else looking for a little advice..
If you would like my email address to chat further then let me know, hopefully I can be of some help.

Baldilocks Fri 17-Jan-03 14:22:36

Definitely an egg allergy I would say. My little one (now 3 1/2) had exactly the same reaction on eating scrambled egg for the first time ... we didn't know what it was at the time, but soon cottoned on when we had a similar incident when she came up in hives after I had just eaten eggs. She had the MMR in hospital and was absolutely fine. We now regularly "challenge" her at home, but she is yet to grow out of this allergy and also has quite a violent reaciton to white fish. She did suffer with bad eczema, but after following a dairy and tomato free diet for more than 18 months now she is practically clear and seems to be able to tolerate dairy in small doses now.

One piece of advice I would give is to keep Piriton Syrup or (if you can get it - we get ours on prescription)Zirtek Syrup, which is a stronger and faster acting antihistamine than Piriton.

Good luch

robinw Fri 17-Jan-03 22:23:30

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Lara2 Tue 21-Jan-03 20:44:11

manna - this sounds so much like my son, only he was slightly younger. Go to your Gp ASAP who will refer you for tests. My ds can also eat egg in things, but not as plain egg or egg white. Avoid plain egg at all costs - the reaction will get more severe each time. We have to have Piriton in the house and have been told to give him an adult dose if he does eat any egg by mistake. My GP even showed me how to do an emergency tracheaotomy (sp?) as not only does he get blotchy, but his face and throat swell up!! My dad is a GP and has said that it probably stems from his triple vaccine - as corbin says. He's not allergic to any other foods - but does have a penecillin allergy.

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