Expecting our Little Brother in November!

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Sunday, February 27, 2011

Big Allergy/Rash Update

So I was completely exhausted when I wrote my last entry, which is why I didn't explain well to my doctor what I had noticed, and I didn't explain well on here what I was feeling about my doctor--which, in retrospect, is unwarrented considering what I actually said to him.

I went to my parents house on Wednesday, until Saturday morning, to visit them and my sister Lauren, who was home for a few days. I took the baby but left the husband. For some reason, I had the hardest time sleeping at my parent's house--as the days passed I began to fall into a serious stupor. Like when you are so tired that you start stumbling around and can't think of words and stare into space when people are trying to talk to you.

So deep was my exhaustion that I even took a pregnancy test this morning--though I think God himself would have been the father if it had been positive--but it wasn't.

Anyway, due to this state, when the doctor called me back, the conversation went something like this:

Me: Yeah, hi, I think James is allergic to gluten.
Doc: Why do you say this?
Me: Well, he has this rash on his forehead since he was like a week old, but I had reduced eating gluten for my own reasons for a few days and it started to get better. Then I ate a lot one day and the next day it was horrible!
Doc: What does the rash look like?
Me: It is red, flaky, inflamed, pussy, and appears to be itchy at least sometimes.
Doc: Well, gluten doesn't pass into milk, which is why cows can eat wheat but milk is gluten free.
Me: ::Flabbergasted at this inarguable logic:: Wow. Yeah, you're right. ::Doesn't know what to think now::
Doc: It's possible he's allergic to wheat or something else you are eating ...
Me: I wondered that and tried eating barley and rye and the next day it was really bad again. Do you test babies this young for food allergies?
Doc: No, not as much food gets into milk as people think. It's probably (fancy medical names for normal baby skin rash), eczema, etc. Try putting X Y Z on it, but it will go away with time . . .

Now, due to my extreme exhaustion and flabbergasted state, I totally failed to mention his other symptoms of an allergy--excessive gas, spitting up, and green, watery, mucousy poops . . . and the fact that this has also improved since I stopped eating gluten.

So I got off the phone feeling still certain that he was dealing with a food allergy but thinking that my doc wasn't taking me seriously. In retrospect, I didn't really explain myself well . . .

Regardless, I have continued to avoid gluten and James' rash is almost totally gone. Considering he has had it since one week after he was born I HIGHLY DOUBT that this is a coincidence. So as people pointed out in my last entry, he is probably allergic to WHEAT (the second most common allergin for newborn babies after milk, NOT GLUTEN as I'd written/thought before).

However, I also realized that I also didn't eat any soy while I was at my parents' house. Maybe he is allergic to soy as well, and so when I thought he was reacting to barley and rye he was actually reacting to soy (I'm not certain I ate it that day but it's pretty darn likely)!

So my plan at this point is to avoid ALL gluten (wheat, barley, and rye), AND soy until the rash is totally healed (probably only a few days from now). Then I will try first eating barley, then rye (and these foods, besides the gluten, aren't very highly allergic), and THEN soy, and watch his reactions very carefully.

I REALLY REALLY hope that he isn't allergic to soy, because that would reduce my list of okay foods to eat to almost nothing--okay, this is an exaggeration, but tofu and other soy replacement products feature pretty significantly in my diet. Things I eat often that I wouldn't be able to eat anymore: Fried Tofu, Tofu scramble, Vegan mac and cheese, pizza with cheese, soy yogurt, tofu pups (vegan hot dogs), edamame, tempeh . . . these foods make up a really good portion of our diet. And they are some of the most protein rich meals that we eat . . .

So I'm REALLY REALLY REALLY hoping that it is ONLY wheat, and NOT soy that we are dealing with. But it's definitely one or both since I'm happy to report that his rash is almost totally healed AND he is hardly spitting up (or burping) at all . . .

So I'm glad to be finally getting to the bottom of this, and I would be thrilled if I could still eat rye bread . . . but I would much rather be able to eat soy . . . keep your fingers crossed, people!


Alyssa said...

Fingers crossed for you! Let us know how it goes!

laurengould said...


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