September 19, 2011

Addi's Egg Challenge

(Sorry in advance for the very poor picture quality as I only had my phone with me!)

I've probably lost sleep with a mixture of anxiety and anticipation over Addi's egg challenge.  When she was around 15 months old, a skin test showed Addi with an egg allergy.  Only by accident did I realize that she had successfully eaten on several occasions foods that likely contained egg white (Chinese fish balls) at a cafe where we ate on a weekly basis.  At her two year visit, together with the allergist, we decided we would challenge Addi with egg.

The egg challenge consisted of a two-and-a-half hour block of time in the allergist office, a bag full of toys, markers, and stickers, an egg cooked omelet-style, and her favorite princess fork.  Her allergist initially fed her what amounted to little more than a crumb-sized portion of egg, then proceeded to feed her larger and larger amounts a total of six times, about every 15 minutes, until she had eaten a good adult sized bite.

So for the next few hours, Addi read all her books,

played with the toys from the toy basket,

chatted with her friends on the phone,

and played doctor (I just realized I've been walking around with a Phineas and Ferb bandaid on my sleeve all day!).

The result?  She was happy throughout the visit (ok, I didn't show you the pics from the last 15 minutes where stir-craziness started to set in and she was rolling around on the floor), and apparently she is a huge fan of egg.  A little redness around the mouth, with a few prickly marks, which didn't develop or worsen.  So, although there is still some ambiguity, I am relieved to know that she is able to tolerate at least some egg.  Her allergist instructed me to give her some egg over the next few days and see how she does. 

Perhaps she grew out of her egg allergy?  Or did her skin test show a false positive?  We may never know...

Wow.  A little weight just lifted off of me.  A little, but still.  I'll keep you posted.

Oh, and here she is with her reward for all that waiting around.  Her very own coffee cup filled with water alongside a cheese and tomato sandwich.  And for me, a much needed tall soy white mocha with light whip.  Perfect.


  1. Sarah, this is such great news for Addi. One down, two to go. :) I would love to hear how you manage your kids' different allergies. For us, we just all eat the same things (no modifications for non-allergic peeps).

  2. I feel obliged to write as you mentioned that she did have a mild reaction. My daughter's blood test at 11 months was borderline for egg and so we had an egg challenge at her office. That day for some reason I only took half an egg. She ate it without any reaction whatsoever. After that she ate about three fourth of an egg on 3 different days spread over a month I think. Over time , I noticed that she wasn't that happy, rubbed her eyes a lot and her eczema (which was quite bad in those days)got worse. Just before her second birthday, she ate a whole egg. She threw up and looked like she was about to faint. I didn't suspect the egg at all at that point but thought that she had picked up something from the ground and put it in her mouth (we were at a friend's place). In short she had to be given the epipen to be on the safe side. The allergist didn't suspect egg either!
    Well,ever since, after a few more experiments, she cannot tolerate even a little bit of egg in baked goods.
    So just a caution!
    Her next blood test showed that her IgE levels for egg had shot up drastically!!

    Not to discourage you but asking you to continue being cautious :)

  3. Thank you so much for your kind words of wisdom. I still have that uncertain feeling in the pit of my stomach which is probably why I've only given her a tiny bit of egg since the office visit. Thankfully I always have an epipen on me in case of emergencies. What we wouldn't give for food allergies to be so much more straightforward!

  4. I think she has very moderate egg allergy and that's the reason that eating eggs is not reacting that much. It's really good effort that by serving her little by little you are trying to get her out of allergy, if possible. However, there would be a thin line that should not be crossed. Be cautious!