Monday, January 26, 2009

Well, that's one way to wake me up.

Last night KayTar slept fitfully, moaning, crying, waking, coughing...I finally brought her to our bed, so we could all get some sleep. This morning when the boys got up and ready for work and school, I stayed in bed with her because she was nuzzled against me and if I had extricated myself, she would have woken up and after last night, I wanted her to get a bit more sleep. We dozed together and the next thing I knew, KayTar was tapping on my shoulder and saying, "Mom, look at me. My tongue is hurty." I rolled over, expecting her to have a sore throat, instead I saw this:








That was NOT the most peaceful way to wake up. Immediately my partially functioning brain did the math:

lip swelling + tongue swelling = anaphylaxis

I grabbed her epi-pens, benadryl, and my cell phone. I called the pediatrician. I usually don't call the pediatrician unless I'm returning a call. I prefer email as I find it much less disruptive, but panicked pre-coffee minds don't really think about things like that. She answered, told me to give her a dose of benadryl, wait 30 minutes, give another dose if needed, and watch her breathing...if she started to struggle, give the epi, go to the hospital. A little while after her second dose of benadryl, the swelling stopped progressing. She is still sporting the Angelina Look, but it isn't spreading or getting worse. According to her, her tongue feels better, too. WHEW! I'm supposed to keep her home today (perfect timing, right?), give benadryl every four hours, and hope that we won't have anymore excitement today.

As for what triggered it? Who knows.

[speculation] KayTar had a homemade cookie last night before bed. The ingredient list was innocuous; butter, sugar, flour, eggs, cream of tartar, and cinnamon. Cinnamon was a likely suspect, but then I remembered she frequently snacks on cinnamon rolls (sans icing) without any kind of problem. The cookies were made in the same kitchen at the same time as cookies containing peanut butter and peanuts, so the only other thing I can think of is cross-contamination, though with her borderline numbers I don't know how likely that is. [/speculation]

The pediatrician said she was likely reacting all night, causing the fitful sleep and coughing, but I didn't think to check her lips for swelling in the middle of the night. I guess I will from now on, though.

The allergist did say that if she continued to have episodes of swelling without cause, we might need to do immune testing. I'd prefer a peanut allergy to an immune problem, but I usually don't get a vote with these things. For now, though, I'm just glad that the swelling is no longer progressing and that I didn't have to jab an epi-pen into her little thigh and rush her to the hospital today.

28 comments:

InTheFastLane said...

Gosh! I would be tempted to watch her all night long, in worry and fear. (my 9 YO has a epilepsy diagnosis and sometimes I worry that he has seizures during the night and I don't know it). But, as you know, you can't live like that. As a pain as a peanut allergy might be, I will root for that, at least it would be an answer in your ambiguous life.

alejna said...

Oh, poor baby! That lip.

So glad the benadryl worked. I hope you get an answer soon.

Beck said...

Poor, poor baby girl.
Hey, I have anaphylaxic reactions to a BUNCH of things - mainly tropical fruits, but some treenuts and some CLEANERS. Oh, and LATEX. Could she have been in contact with anything rubbery? It's a super common allergy, and often linked to peanut allergies.

Bon said...

dude that's terrifying. and puzzling...nice combination. lucky you.

i will say that third photo should have the Ford modelling agency at your door any moment, but i suspect that may be cold comfort...

poor wee KayTar, and poor you. hope answers are forthcoming soon.

mamatulip said...

How scary, for both of you. I'm really glad the Benadryl worked.

Anonymous said...

Hi there!
Long time lurker delurking to ask if KayTar is probably allergic to cats?
I hope at least this piece of the KayTar-puzzle will be found soon.
Best wishes, Anne

Jaden Paige said...

Poor Kaytar. I hope the swelling goes ALL the way down soon!

Perksofbeingme said...

Poor KayTar. I'm glad she's feeling better. I'll keep her in my thoughts.

Allison said...

Have you considered an egg allergy? It's not that uncommon, especially among young children. (And some kids grow out of it, which is nice - I did.)

Sheila @ Dr Cason.org said...

Eggs??

It's one of the most common allergies

Eggs
Soy
Milk (casein and whey)
Shellfish (shrimp)
Peanut
Wheat

Are the top ones.

Man I feel your pain. I'm so sorry.

Anonymous said...

Did she use any chapstick like she had the first time you noticed a reaction?

Kyla said...

She tested negative for eggs and has had egg containing items many times with no reaction.

We have a cat, but have for about a year and she doesn't react after touching the cat.

No chapstick this time either. She's used that same chapstick many times before and after that initial reaction without incident.

The pediatrician is leaning toward peanut allergy, due to the trace amounts present in both reactions and because it is the only thing she showed reactivity to.

Amy Y said...

Oh no! Glad the benadryl worked... I hope you find a culprit soon!!

Jenny, the Bloggess said...

It's obvious that you're giving your child collagen injections in an attempt to make her cuter than everyone else's child.

That's so not right, Kyla.

Becca said...

Not again! You guys need a break. Waking up to an emergency is so disorienting. I'm so sorry!

jen said...

oh honey. oh no.

my god, woman. you and your grace.

crazymumma said...

oh man. she is a mystery is she not.

but would not a severe reaction have happened so much more swiftly?

kittenpie said...

Oh, god, Kyla. And to think I was worried that Pumpkinpie threw up in her sleep without waking... potential anaphylaxis in sleep is terrifying. I ope she feels better soon and it is an allergy. At least there is awareness about that and most schools and suhc are peanut-free now. An immune porblem would be much harder to really deal with in the world.

~aj~ said...

I just can't imagine how panicked you must have felt when you saw her this morning. I'm SO glad that things did not get any worse. I'm sure that will count as your adrenaline rush for the week!

And I have to add that The Bloggess is cracking me up, as usual. :)

wheelsonthebus said...

Wow. THat is some lip. I was going to ask about eggs, but clearly that has been covered.

flutter said...

she kills me. just kills me.

Jo said...

Yikes! Glad she is feeling better, cause that is scary!

Avonlea said...

Scary!! I think your speculation is right on; sounds like a sensitivity to peanuts.

Hetha said...

Oh Kyla! That poor little precious girl. And you. Like you really need to add a new worry to your already full plate. You guys are in my prayers.

Janet said...

So scary. I hope you never have to jab the Epi into her thigh too.

carrie said...

Oh Kyla. Oh KayTar.

I wish I could come and watch over her at night so you could sleep. 'Cause I'd to that, you know.

tiff said...

Wow. That must have been scary for you. Glad you didn't end up in the hospital. Hoping for possible allergy over immune problems because they are not fun at all 9not that what you are going through is a party).

Woman in a Window said...

oh, look at that last shot. She looks confused and lost.