I'm really torn about how to proceed with this. My son recently underwent an egg challenge in the allergist's office. It was not successful. Looking over the AAAAI guidelines, it appears that he would need several skin pricks (which he hates) and then if we proceed, he may require 5 vaccines at 15 minute intervals. If a medical issue arises, we face a shot of epinephrine and perhaps inhaled steroids. Ugh!
And that's just the H1N1 vaccine. This whole procedure is repeated for the seasonal flu vaccine. For the past few years, the rest of the family has received the seasonal flu vaccine. I get mine this afternoon. Our egg allergic son has not gotten the vaccine. Swine flu makes me more nervous.
What are the rest of you with egg allergies or egg allergic children doing? I know that I need to contact our allergist, but I'm not sure we want to go down the road that will be recommended...
I share your "ugh!" You'd think they could make this easier for our poor little ones. My son had a really strong reaction to egg on his last prick test, so we were told not to try baked in egg, and that he couldn't get any flu shots. Of course, reading online later, as usual it's not that simple, nobody agrees, etc. Personally, I've never gotten or had my son get the flu shot anyway. I don't like the whole mercury issue with flu shots. The allergist did say it was important that other household members get the flu shot since he can't (so good for you for getting it). Of course I'll be horrified if he ends up exposed to H1N1, but right now, I'm thinking we're going to forego all flu vaccines and hope for the best. (Seems parents of children with severe asthma are more inclined toward getting the flu shot even with egg allergy; in our case, our son has had a couple of episodes of wheezing, but we are hoping he does not have asthma). Best of luck with your decision.
I am in the same predicament as you are. Both of my sons are allergic to eggs and have asthma. One with a severe allergy and one with a very mild allergy. I think we are leaning toward everyone but the oldest getting the shot (especially me since I'm pregnant). I'm hoping this will protect us. I wish they could figure out how to make the vaccine without using eggs.
My son also has a severe egg allergy (anaphylactic rxn last summer) and moderate asthma. Our game plan right now is to get the rest of the family vaccinated and then wash, wash, wash our hands! I'm pretty concerned about the whole prospect of complications if he gets H1N1, but I know what will happen if he is exposed to the eggs.
I too am so freaked out. What do we do? I really can't get any doctor to give me an answer. Egg will result is nurological ticks for who know how long. My 5 year old has been like a different person off of eggs. But H1N1 could kill him. And he has mild asthma....I have so much anxiety around this issue.
UGH! is an understatement I think.... I was talking to our county's department of health servies and the nurse there indicated that there was an egg free H1N1 vacination. She said that one company made a vacine for egg allergic children, but didn't know the brand name or anything. I cannot find anything else on the internet about it.... Anyone heard of it?????
I found this right after I posted last..... Not sure where to find this but.....
my daughter is allergic to egg and gets a special flu shot through Mt. Sinai. it is called Fluarix and the level of egg in it is miniscule. They prick her once prior to the vaccine to see if there is a reaction. If none they give half a dose and then wait a half hour. then they give the rest of the does and wait an other half hour.
Our 3 year old son Sam has is allergic to eggs and peanuts and has asthma...The allergist after testing wouldn't administer the flu shot or H1N1. The whole family has had our flu shots and the H1N1 shots. We are scared enough that he will get exposed. Our family Dr has even insisted he be taken out of day care...aside from losing our jobs and overwhelming grandparents we are beside ourselves trying to do the right thing.
I feel everyones agony on this one. My son has a mild allergy to egg, but I still worry,because he's never had a large amount of egg so I don't know what would happen.I don't want to take that chance either.I can remember before we learned of his allergy,he was about 3,I took him for a flu shot,it reacted against him and he was not well all winter,he stayed sick and was even once hospitalized.He's never had another flu shot.I make sure we wash hands consistently and I try to minimize us going in public in flu season and especially now.I joke that I have quarentined my children so they stay healthy.Yet I feel this is the best decision for my family.I'm not willing to risk my sons health or life.I'm not going to be giving either of my kids any of the flu vaccines.My daughter hasn't been tested for allergies yet,shes too young.
We are in the same situation with egg allergy and asthma. Our allergist administered the seasonal flu shot in the following manner: #1 Skin prick test, #2 Small injection in arm (like a TB test), #3 Small amount injected in leg, #4 Remaining flu shot injected in leg. There were waiting periods between each step to monitor allergic symptoms. We did not have any complications. After the three hour appointment ended, they reminded me he would need a second dose in one month.
Now we are trying to get the H1N1 vaccine administered in the same manner, but the allergist does not have it. The health department has doses, but refuses to work with us. Good luck to us all!
It is so helpul to read these blogs and to see that we are NOT the only ones dealing with the should we or shouldn't we give our egg allergy children a vaccine that may or may not help. Double UGH on that. I had Mt Sinai tell me under no circumstances give my child the flu shot and I have my local allergist tell me he is at a greater risk if he does NOT recieve the shot. TOTALLY CONFUSED!!!
I have a severe egg allergy. I can't even touch one without endagering my life. My epipen is my best friend. Prior to my allergies becoming the center of my life, I always had the flu shot & if I did not have this allergy I would get the H1N1. I've already had this flu according to my doctor, and it was not fun.
My children will be getting the vaccination, for both the seasonal & H1N1, even though they have been exposed to the H1N1 already. Especially my 2 children with moderate - severe asthma. The changes of mercury poisoning are low. At least no worse than those in shellfish or other fish products. My oldest daughter has severe antibiotic allergies & asthma. If she did get H1N1 or seasonal flu & then had a secondary infection (which often happens to her)from this such as bronchitis or pneumonia, we have virtually no way of treating it. So, the risks associated with the H1N1 vaccine are small in comparision to the potential problems that could arrise from the actual virus.
They can make the vaccine without eggs using another method which I belive is called the cell-culture process. However, the stocks are very low & because of the increased need, and mass production, most are now egg based vaccines & you would have to ask your allergist or family doctor about checking into it for you.
Nothing in life is without risk. All any parent can do is make the most informed decision they can based on their individual children's needs. Good luck to everyone.
my daughter received the flu shot 2 years ago and had a reaction. she didn't received it last year. Last saturday she had one and had same reaction as before. We decided to get her allergy testing because prior to this she was getting hives at odd times. Now we know she has a milk egg allergy. It explains a lot but leaves us with more questions. For her, it's been decided that from now on, she will received such shots only in office with the doctor. She has asthma as well and other allergies. Now I am doing research on egg allergies (how I found this blog) because I think all her reactions are due to foods I give her regularly.
so, im 17 and i was wondering if anyone knows if its safe for me to get the shot cause when i was a baby i was allergic to eggs, now i can eat them sometimes... and i hardly ever have a reasction. I've got asthma and my mom wants me to get it. i really dont want it, cause i hate needles but still. asthma and h1n1 dont mix so i hear. so... what should i do ?
Welcome "Anonymous and 17".
Great question about the vaccine and your history with egg allergy. Flu vaccines contain differing amount of egg protein. An allergist can do a skin test with the actual vaccine to determine whether you can tolerate it. Talk to your doctor about whether the benefits outweigh the risks. Good luck with this decision.
Holy cow! My first concern with the H1N1 was the thimersol. Just last Monday we confirmed my 12 month old son has milk, soy, egg, peanut and tree nut allergies. He had already received the first of 2 doses of his seasonal flu vaccine without incident (before we knew he was egg allergic). I called my ped. today and scheduled an H1N1 and a nurse assured me that he'd be fine getting it with an egg allergy. I did my own research and then called his allergist who told me that under no circumstance should he get the H1N1 there, only in the allergist's office. What in the world is wrong with my pediatrician's office? Why aren't they taking egg allergy seriously? I'm considering changing practices. I don't know yet if he has asthma, but it sounds like it's pretty much inevitable reading that all your allergic kids have asthma as well.
We did get Thimerosal-free seasonal flu vaccines this year. Our family practice special ordered them for us last year for this year's vaccine. Since it only comes in pediatric doses, my hubby and I had to get a shot in each arm.
To Annonymous with the pediatrician who said "no problem" giving H1N1 to your egg allergic son...I think many family docs and pediatricians are unaware of this issue. Many vaccines and medications contain food protein and I've always had to be the one to point that out to the doctor. Just keep questioning and researching.
Our allergist still doesn't have seasonal flu or H1N1 vaccines in their office. So, for now, we haven't had to make a decision...
This decision is overwhelming. I am not a germ-a-phobe type of mom. I normally do not freak out about these things. But, I am now. They keep saying kids with asthma NEED to get the seasonal & H1N1 flu shots. My 3-year-old son has moderate/severe asthma. He does Pulmicort twice a day on the nebulizer. Unfortunately, he is also allergic to eggs (as well as milk, tree nuts & grass). What the heck are we supposed to do? He is in the high-risk category, but he can't even get the vaccine. It's crazy!
We are in the same predicament. My daughter has egg allergies, asthma and other underlining conditions. I spoke to hear allergist and will be getting a test done with the vaccine when they get it in her office. I recommend talking to your allergist because some patients might still be able to get it even if they are allergic to eggs. Hope the best to everyone
I am taking my 9 month old to the allergist today to have the seasonal flu administered. We had the skin test and no reaction so now we will have 10% then wait 30 mintues and then the rest and wait another 30 mintues. I actually asked the allergist to go get the vaccine from my pediatrican and now they have the swine flu vaccine so I will have to ask again! They weren't to trilled the first time....but what else am I suppose to do. The H1N1 scares me so much. I work in healthcare and I don't want to brin git home. So I need him to have it. I have pulled him from daycare for now until he has the vaccine. Good luck to everyone!
My 3 year old son is severely allergic to eggs and has bad asthma... he was sent to the hospital a few weeks ago by the pediatrician for asthma. The asthma has us scared enough that we want to try the flu shot. Its a hard decision either way. Our allergist does not have any flu vaccine, but they are sending a note to our pediatrician so we can pick it up there and bring it to the allergist's office. Perhaps some of you out there who also cannot get it straight from an allergist can pick it up elsewhere? We live in New York State... maybe regulations vary by state.
For now, I have both my boys (3 and 4, both with asthma) home from preschool and activities. I am lucky I am a stay at home Mom and they are not in grade school yet.
Good luck everyone. I wish your families a HEALTHY winter.
My 4 year old son, who has a severe egg allergy and asthma, recently received the regular flu vaccine. His allergist gave it to him in three doses - 10% of the dose, waited 30 minutes, 25% of the dose, waited 30 minutes, the remainder of the vaccine and then we waited an hour. He had no problems and we go back for the second part of the vaccine in 4 weeks.
There are lots of different flu vaccines - made by different drug companies. They contain various amounts of egg - and those levels are important when you are dealing with a severe egg allergy. Any allergist should have access to this information and should administer the vaccine with the lowest level of egg protein.
With regards to H1N1 - we too are unsure what we will do. The rest of the family will get it if we can, but Mt. Sinai is not recommending the vaccine for any of their egg allergy patients because of indaquate testing for that group.
Since food allergy and asthma seem to go hand in hand for many kids,and we are seeing such a huge increase in the number of children being affected, you would think someone would develop a safe vaccine for this incredibly vulnerable group. VERY FRUSTRATING!
I am a parent of a 10 year old son who has a moderate egg allergy, he too has asthma. We as a family have never gotten the flu shot due to the egg issue. I work with public and I am exposed to everything under the sun. My sons go to public school and also exposed to everything. At this point being that we live in a fairly remote community and have to travel to see a specialist such as an allergist we will most likley as a family not be getting the flu or H1N1 shots. I will be discussing it with our local doctors but unless they come up with shots that do not contain eggs we will not be exposing our son to something that could potentially put him in the hosptial. As parents we have to make the best choices possible and the most informed. I wish all of you luck in your quest for informaiton and thank you for sharing your thoughts.
Hi Everyone, (Canadian)
I have a 5 year-old son. For sometime now I have suspected he had food allergies, particularly to egg. However, he doesn't like egg so I didn't push the issue; I have never seen any visible signs that he has an egg allergy.
On Friday I took him in for the H1N1 vaccine, I told the main nurse at the flu clinic that I suspected my son was allergic to eggs and she said as long as he isn't anaphylactic it's okay. An hour after his shot he developed hives on his extremiities and his face was swollen. I took him to our walk-in clinic office where they gave him Benedryl. It was scary. On Sunday he tried one small bite of egg and 15 minutes later same reaction as the vaccine. I feel like I gave him the allergy by giving him the shot! Thank God the seasonal flu vaccine didn't make it to our health unit in time for the flu clinic, otherwise he would have been fighting both.
So...my family doctor does not recommend giving him the booster he is suppose to have in 3 weeks. Right now, we don't have an egg free vaccine option or even a reduced one at that in Canada. I can't sleep as I am so worried about him. H1N1 is alive and well in my community; at least he should have some immunity built up. He will be seeing an allergist ASAP.
I, myself, have many allergies and asthma; I did get both the H1N1 and seasonal, at the same time, without reaction.
(Canadian) From our government site...
Q8. What does the Government of Canada recommend regarding immunization for people with allergies to eggs?
People with a hypersensitivity to eggs, (e.g. hives, swelling of mouth and/or throat, breathing difficulty), should not receive the vaccine.
If you have a mild egg allergy, consult a healthcare provider before immunization. You may be able to be immunized with some additional precautions.
Recently, the Canadian Society of Allergy and Clinical Immunology released a statement advising that both seasonal and H1N1 vaccine can be administered in patients with egg allergies if precautions are taken, such as extra observation time, and if medical treatment for severe allergic reactions are on-hand.
Also, people with egg allergies will be somewhat protected from catching H1N1 flu virus as people around them get immunized. The more immunized people there are in the community, the greater the probability that there will be less H1N1 flu virus in the community.
It's nice to know we aren't alone in this decision. We chose not to have our daughter vaccinated. I feel the chances of her getting H1N1 are low, but the reaction to egg is high. It's not worth it to me.
I'm frustrated about not being able to get the shot as well. I'm a 25-year old college graduate with Asthma and allergies to egg, milk/dairy, and nuts. I know I need the shot with my Asthma, but of course can't get it because of the egg. It's a stupid catch 22. Anyways, to the poster that mentioned there was or will be an H1N1 vaccine available without eggs for those allergic to it, I JUST found some info about that. The companies producing it or in the process of producing it are FluGen, Inc.® and Novartis®. The website I pulled it from says this: "
Newer methods for flu vaccine are on the horizon. Advances in molecular technology have allowed the creation of a flu vaccine that would be safe for those with an egg allergy. FluGen, Inc.® recently announced a cell-based production of flu vaccine that doesn't use egg in any part of the process. The company hopes to ramp up production and have vaccine ready 'in the very near future'. This cell-based process would save weeks in manufacture time and is less likely to become contaminated.
Another pharmaceutical company, Novartis®, also claims to be close to being able to offer a cell-based vaccine. They are hoping for U.S. shipment of cell-based swine flu vaccine in December 2009 or January 2010."
I will be keeping my eye on this, along with you guys. Here's the source where: http://food-allergies.suite101.com/article.cfm/flu_vaccine_and_egg_allergies
Oh, I should note that I don't know whether or not FluGen, Inc.® and Novartis® are making eggless seasonal flu vaccines, eggless H1N1 vaccines, or both. I wish it would have clarified, but it didn't.
I have 5 year old son with an egg allergy: IgE rated as "very high" but not "extreme". After doing some research, I came across an article that was written as a "Letter to the Editor" by George Konstantinou in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. It was regarding the consumption of heat-treated egg in children with allergies. I decided to mirror the study in my own child, by gradually giving increasing amounts of egg in COOKED muffin (350 degrees for 20min) over a 6 month period. By the end of it, he was able to tolerate 1 egg cooked in a muffin, though he didn't like it much. I tried 1/2 a scrambled egg, but that gave him a stomach ache (but no hives). I had consulted his allergist prior to doing this. I even corresponded to Mr. Konstaninou by email after I finished my study. Because my son's IgE blood levels increased over the 6 month period of the study, I got scared and stopped doing it for a few months. My allergist and Mr. Konstantinou thought that I should have continued, because they said IgE levels do not necessarily correspond to clinical symptoms. I started up feeding him the muffins again but I had restart with a low concentration of egg again because his tolerance to egg had decreased during the months I was not giving him the egg. Now I give him a muffin a day, but keep it at 1/3 of an egg. Keep in mind it must be cooked at a high temperature for a period of time--scrambled eggs are cooked less and are more potent. I would suggest talking to your allergist about increasing your tolerance to egg if you are highly allergic. It could save your life.
My daughter is also allergic to Dairy and Eggs. The best we can do right now is preventative care. We have amazing pediatricians and holistic advisors who have given us a list of daily immune boosters; Probiotics, Omega 3, Vitamin C, D and A, along with Elderberry and Thyme.
Best preventative remedy for all flu strains, Elderberry/Thyme + Vit D (5000 IU) a day!!!
Find it at Whole Foods.
Hope this helps.
I have a 4 year old son who went into Anaphyalic shock from eating eggs. I contacted the Ministry of Health to see what their plans are for the people with eggs allergies and there are no plans. She just recommended that I take the normal precautions to avoid him coming in contact with the virus. One thing she did mention was that I should contact Health Canada to ask them if they are planning to provide a vaccine for people with egg allergies. I believe the US does have this vaccine available and it's provided by Baxter.
My pediatrician refused to give the H1N1 vaccine due to an obsolete 5-year-old paper in the file showing my asthmatic daughter was high in the CHRONIC type of egg allergy (IGG) and also tested as having a very slight acute reaction at that time.
But my daughter can eat a couple fried eggs with NO reaction. The doctor had no idea that IGG response have nothing to do with anaphylactic (IGE) reactions. Complete ignorance. The allergist confirmed that the flu shot would be OK, but it made no difference. The Pediatrician absolutely refused and even tried to have the allergist give the flu shot!
I called the local health clinic, said nothing about egg allergies, and my daughter was vaccinated yesterday with absolutely no reaction. She didn't even get a bump on her arm.
The point here being that many physicians are so obsessed with possible reactions and potential lawsuits they may ignore what may be the greater threat of asthmatic kids not getting the vaccine. If a person can eat eggs, they can get the vaccine.
I personally have a much worse reaction to eggs (including vomiting and so forth - I CAN'T eat eggs) but have received flu shots in the past with no reaction.
It is only people with SEVERE allergies to eggs that are at risk of reactions. The H1N1 flu can be life-threatening -- don't let a mild allergy stand in the way.
It's very interesting that those of you with children allergic to eggs are considering giving them flu or MMR vaccines. Just b/c a child doesn't react to a shot or allergen right away doesn't indicate that a reaction will not occur later on. Good luck w/ your decisions...
Last comment got messed up somehow when I posted it, so I deleted it. Anyways, I finally, FINALLY was able to get the H1N1 / Swine Flu Vaccine through my allergist's office, who did not make it easy for me either (you'd think they'd get it, but they just didn't care that much). I ended up creating a webpage for those of you who commented about trying or wanting to get the vaccine for your or your child but not being able to because of an egg allergy. Hope this helps some-
Also, if there's anything you think I should add to the webpage, let me know and I will if it's relevant.
I, of course, a newcomer to this blog, but the author does not agree
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