Food Poisoning or Anaphylactic

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New Member

Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 8/23/2006 8:44 AM (GMT -6)   
Hello.  I hope you can help me with a frustrating situation.
On Sunday, our family was eating at Fazoli's after church.  When we were just finishing up, our five year old got severe tummy cramps.  I took him to the bathroom, but he couldn't go.  When we got out to the car, he got very sick and vomited about 5 times.  Then we noticed hives on his arms and cheeks and he had severe itching on his feet.  He was also having respiratory collapse in that he turned very pale and slumped over and couldn't communicate well with us.
My immediate thought was that he was having an allergic reaction.  (anaphylactic shock) We called 911 and an ambulance came and took him to the hospital.  He was given cortisone?? and benadryl.  It took about an hour for his coloring to get better.  He started off very pale but then got VERY red.  After an hour his coloring was good and besides a stomach ache felt much better.  He continued to get diarrhea for two days.  He was sent home with an epi-pen.
My doctor that I talked to Monday, said it sounded more like food poisoning (staph) because he didn't have restricted airways and no swelling of the lips or eyes.  Can the "shock" itself from Staph (toxins) create the hives and itching?
What is your opinion?  He's never reacted to any foods before.
Thank you so much for your help.

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 53
   Posted 8/23/2006 11:24 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Lynnette!
Welcome to the board!! :) Sorry you found us thanks to such frusterating circumstances.

I'm not terribly familiar with food poisoning/staph infections, but your son's reaction sounds very much like my early reactions (between the ages of 4-8) to my food allergin--with the except that I had *terrible* diarrhea after about 10 minutes of stomach cramping. It wasn't until a few years of encountering these reactions that I had my throat begin to swell. Do you recall if his heart rate became irregular or elevated (beyond what's normal thanks to the stress of such a situation?)? It is a little odd that his diarrhea continued for two days if it was an allergic reaction, but perhaps other's here have had the same experience?? Either way, I'm relieved to hear you have an epi-pen for him. Keep it around until you know for sure if it was an allergy or food poisoning!

As for the hives/itching, I've never heard of that reaction to food poisoning, but I'm wondering if the toxins may have triggered a histimine responce similar to the response given allergins (which are, in essence, "poison" to the body).

Sorry I had no definite answers for you! Hopfully someone here will say "AH HA! That happened to me too--here's why." ;-)

Elite Member

Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 23551
   Posted 8/24/2006 8:19 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi and welcome to Healingwell! Could it be possible that he had both food poisoning and an allergic reaction? I have never had that severe of allergic reaction but I have had food poisoning. I had severe gut pain, nausea and diarreah for 4 days. What did he have to eat?
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New Member

Date Joined Aug 2006
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 8/24/2006 8:37 AM (GMT -6)   

Hi.  Thanks for your responses.  He had fettucine alfredo.  I think one reason my doctor thought it was staph bacteria, is because it is often found on dairy products, cream sauces, etc.  Is it the "shock" reaction that causes the itchy hands and feet that are often associated with anaphylactic shock?  I've done some reading on food poisoning and anaph. shock and with both it said that the toxins both produce cause dilated blood vessels, thus a decrease in blood pressure.  I would think that the sudden drop in blood pressure would create the itchy hands and feet.  Does that sound logical to you?

My feeling is that it was food poisoning, simply because he has never reacted to any food.  BUT, I have kept him off of dairy since.  I'm scared to give him any...just in case.  He's had everything in his diet since then and done fine.  His diarrhea lasted Sunday, Monday and a little on Tuesday.  He did NOT have a tummy ache yesterday at all and seems back to normal.  I've had an allergic reaction to food before and didn't have the lasting diarrhea either.  Certainly that would make it seem like a bacteria.  My doctor said it takes a few days to clear out.  He said not to stop the diarrhea.  It apparently ran it's course.

Thank you so much for your input.  It helped to know "TickSquisher" :)  didn't have ongoing diarrhea.  I'll update in the days to come to let you know when I try dairy again and what happens.  Any other input would be so much appreciated.

Have a lovely day.


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