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minibeastie

Sneezing Fit, Itchy Swollen Throat, Itchy Eyes After Re-Introduction Of Gluten?

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Hi everyone,

 

I just came back from an appt with my doctor and I'm pretty confused, so I'm turning to the internet for help haha, and I found this forum. I've been having digestive troubles (severe bloating after ANY meal, even a piece of fruit) and my doctor immediately suspected a food allergy, possibly gluten. He tested me for celiac disease with the blood test, and it came back negative. He said that the test is only 95% accurate, and that he recommended I try eliminating gluten for one month to see how I did, and possibly re-introducing it afterwards to look for a reaction.

 

I eliminated it for two weeks, but I guess I wasn't taking it very seriously and two weeks in I caved and ate some of my favorite vegetarian meatballs (the main ingredient being wheat gluten, haha). While eating them I noticed my nose was running a whole lot, but ignored it. I brushed my teeth and went to bed. About 15 min after eating them, my nose got itchy and I started having a sneezing fit. My eyes got itchy, and my throat got itchy and STARTED TO SWELL UP. I could still breathe fine, but it was uncomfortable to swallow, and I was coughing and to be honest I was pretty alarmed (there are a couple of antibiotics I have a severe allergy to, and I know when your throat starts to swell that's nothing to mess around with). After about an hour, all symptoms had completely gone. What happened????

 

So I visited my doctor (today) and he says he is pretty sure I have a gluten allergy, but it can't be diagnosed until I am able to see an allergist (here in British Columbia, the wait is about one year). Until then he recommends I eat a very strict gluten free diet, and keep benadryl (sp?) on hand just in case I end up getting a severe reaction. He says the longer I leave it out of my diet and let my body heal, the more severe the reaction will be.

 

He says some people develop allergies later in life, and that it's also possible I have been forcing my body to get used to gluten even though it's allergic and so suppressing the reactions. But I still don't understand how I could be THAT allergic to something and never know. I had been eating gluten probably every day for all 30-some years of my life. I wonder if anyone has had a similar experience, or if anyone can explain this sort of thing to me? So confused. I'm also confused if this type of reaction is the same as or different from celiac disease? Is "gluten allergy" a different thing?

 

Thanks everyone for taking the time to read my ramble haha. :)

minibeastie

 

 

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Hi Minibeastie and Welcome to the Forum.

 

Your Doctor is not being very clear.  First, Celiac is an Autoimmune Disease, nothing to do with allergies.  You can have an allegic reaction to a particular food ie: wheat etc.  If he told you to have benedryl around then he must be thinkng allergy.  The Blood tests for Celiac is not one test, it is a panel of tests followed by an endoscope procedure.

 

If you choose to pursue a Celiac diagnsis then stop eating gluten for 8-12 weeks and have a full blood panel done.  If pursueing an allergy diagnosis then the Allergist is the way to go.

 

Colleen


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Hi Colleen,

 

Thanks for taking the time to reply. :) Oh I see, so Celiac and food allergies are completely different... how do I know which one I should be testing for? Do celiacs ever have that type of immediate reaction to wheat/gluten (sneezing, itchy eyes, itchy throat)? I have looked up some of the symptoms for celiac disease but some of the lists are so general that it would he hard to say... it seems like each person has different symptoms too.

 

He only ran one blood test for Celiac Disease (or at least it was only listed as one test on the test results paper). It was called Tissue Transglutaminase Ab IgA and came back saying "NEG". Is this different from the blood panel you mentioned?

 

 

 

 

 

Hi Minibeastie and Welcome to the Forum.

 

Your Doctor is not being very clear.  First, Celiac is an Autoimmune Disease, nothing to do with allergies.  You can have an allegic reaction to a particular food ie: wheat etc.  If he told you to have benedryl around then he must be thinkng allergy.  The Blood tests for Celiac is not one test, it is a panel of tests followed by an endoscope procedure.

 

If you choose to pursue a Celiac diagnsis then stop eating gluten for 8-12 weeks and have a full blood panel done.  If pursueing an allergy diagnosis then the Allergist is the way to go.

 

Colleen

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Mini,

Here is the complete panel of blood and endoscopy tests:

-tTG IgA and tTG IgG

-DGP IgA and DGP IgG

-EMA IgA

-total serum IgA and IgG (control test)

-AGA IGA and AGA IgG - older and less reliable tests largely replace by the DGP tests

-endoscopic biopsy - make sure at least 6 samples are taken

(Source: NVSMOM -- )

Only my DGP IGA was positive and my TTG tests were negative. The TTg test is typically the screening test and catches most with celiac disease, but not all. You could ask for the full panel. Your symptoms do sound more like allergies though and it is possible to have both Celiac Disease and an allergy to wheat, but we are not doctors here. You must be consuming gluten for 8 to 12 weeks for the blood tests to be accurate.

Welcome to the forum and let us know how it goes!


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Allergies and Food Intolerances

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You can't be allergic to gluten, but you can be allergic to wheat. And it sounds like you are. Or maybe you're allergic to one of the other ingredients in those meatballs. And an allergy can be life threatening. In my opinion you shpoould be carrying an epipen.

 

You need to be eating gluten for the celiac tests to be valid but it seems to me that wouldn't be a wise idea. It could kill you. What I would do is cut out ALL gluten permanently and maybe the bloating will disappear too. Go to the Newbie 101 thread in the coping section to learn how to eliminate all gluten and avoid cross-contamination.


gluten-free since June, 2011

It took 3 !/2 years but my intolerances to corn, soy, and everything else (except gluten) are gone!

Life is good!

 

 

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You can't be allergic to gluten, but you can be allergic to wheat. And it sounds like you are. Or maybe you're allergic to one of the other ingredients in those meatballs. And an allergy can be life threatening. In my opinion you shpoould be carrying an epipen.

 

You need to be eating gluten for the celiac tests to be valid but it seems to me that wouldn't be a wise idea. It could kill you. What I would do is cut out ALL gluten permanently and maybe the bloating will disappear too. Go to the Newbie 101 thread in the coping section to learn how to eliminate all gluten and avoid cross-contamination.

Great advice. Getting to the allergist would be the first thing to address.


Non-functioning Gall bladder Removal Surgery 2005

Diagnosed via Blood Test and Endoscopy: March 2013

Hashimoto's Thyroiditis -- Stable 2014

Anemia -- Resolved

Fractures (vertebrae): June 2013

Osteopenia/osteoporosis -- June 2013

Allergies and Food Intolerances

Diabetes -- January 2014

Celiac.com - Celiac Disease Board Moderator

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Thanks to everyone for taking the time to respond! I will go ahead and check out the newbie thread and make sure I'm safely eliminating everything until I am able to see the allergist. I don't want to try any of the celiac tests if it involves eating lots of gluten/wheat, and a risk of having a reaction.  :unsure:  I will talk to the allergist about it after I get my results back. :)

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It is possible to have celiac and wheat/gluten allergy. I am allergic to wheat and barley for sure and my reactions are too severe to give rye a trial. I also have celiac complications. The reaction that you described sounds like an allergy and you need to take caution in any future trials. I am surprised that the allergist wait is so long. I would definitely keep antihistamines handy at all times while you get your diagnosis sorted. And I also think an Epipen would be in order given the nature of your reaction.


My super silly red siren is my guiding light. She has been a tremendous lesson for me in how gluten affects different people in very different ways. She is a super duper silly girl that was simply born that way. I have no idea why I am so blessed to have her guidance.

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It is possible to have celiac and wheat/gluten allergy. I am allergic to wheat and barley for sure and my reactions are too severe to give rye a trial. I also have celiac complications. The reaction that you described sounds like an allergy and you need to take caution in any future trials. I am surprised that the allergist wait is so long. I would definitely keep antihistamines handy at all times while you get your diagnosis sorted. And I also think an Epipen would be in order given the nature of your reaction.

Thanks for the advice weluvgators! I am on top of the antihistimines, but will have to look into an epipen. I am in British Columbia, where everyone has MSP health care. I actually think it's fantastic (I am from New York originally, and I appreciate that I can afford to buy health insurance for my family for $100 a month instead of $600) but it also means that since everyone has the same access to care the wait for specialists is very long. :(

 

It is good to know that it's possible to have a wheat allergy and celiac disease... if I do have celiac disease I'd love to get a formal diagnosis, because I'd be able to write off the extra food costs as a medical expense. But I'd be afraid to do any of the testing that requires you to eat gluten for months prior!

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Thanks for the advice weluvgators! I am on top of the antihistimines, but will have to look into an epipen. I am in British Columbia, where everyone has MSP health care. I actually think it's fantastic (I am from New York originally, and I appreciate that I can afford to buy health insurance for my family for $100 a month instead of $600) but it also means that since everyone has the same access to care the wait for specialists is very long. :(

 

It is good to know that it's possible to have a wheat allergy and celiac disease... if I do have celiac disease I'd love to get a formal diagnosis, because I'd be able to write off the extra food costs as a medical expense. But I'd be afraid to do any of the testing that requires you to eat gluten for months prior!

If you are dx'd with a wheat allergy then will you be able to write off the extra food costs as a medical expense? 


Gluten free Dec. 2011
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Rheumatoid Arthritis October 2018

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If you are dx'd with a wheat allergy then will you be able to write off the extra food costs as a medical expense? 

From what I can tell on the CRA website, t looks like the tax write-off is specifically for celiacs, and not for anyone else with a restricted diet for medical reasons. But if I'm missing something, and someone on the forum knows otherwise, please let me know!

 

http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/gluten-free/

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Do you have epi's for your drug allergies?  With the reaction you are describing, you really should have 2 epi pens with you at all times. 

I totally don't! But I am going to look into getting one. I had severe reactions to those 2 types of antibiotics when I was younger, and the doctor never recommeded that my family get an epi-pen, so I've never had one. Maybe because it would be pretty hard to be accidentally exposed to an antibiotic, the same way you could be to a food?

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That's right. The doctor never gave me an epipen for my allergies to penecillin or sulfa, but he gave me one for bee stings.


gluten-free since June, 2011

It took 3 !/2 years but my intolerances to corn, soy, and everything else (except gluten) are gone!

Life is good!

 

 

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I totally don't! But I am going to look into getting one. I had severe reactions to those 2 types of antibiotics when I was younger, and the doctor never recommeded that my family get an epi-pen, so I've never had one. Maybe because it would be pretty hard to be accidentally exposed to an antibiotic, the same way you could be to a food?

 

Yes, I don't think they are routinely given for drug allergies for exactly the reason you stated but now it really sounds like you should have one.  And IMO you need one ASAP, not in a year when you get into the allergist.  

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And until you get one carry the antihistamines around with you at all times. I am not a doctor but personally, if it were me, I would have liquid benadryl rather than the pills. The liquid would be faster acting. In fact, liquid benadryl saved my life when I was 3 years old. I am anaphylactic to penicillin but the doc or pharmacy goofed & gave it to me anyway (it was the 2nd time I had it). My uncle just happened to be a doctor & my mom called him in a panic because my throat was swelling closed. He told my mom to get a spoon & hold my tongue down & pour the entire bottle down my throat while he called the ambulance to get me. That saved me that time.


Gluten free Dec. 2011
Dermatitis Herpetiformis

Reynaud's October 2018

Rheumatoid Arthritis October 2018

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