Posts tagged RAST

The blasted RAST

Monday was rainy beyond rainy. It had poured most of the weekend and it was not letting up. Hunter had major cabin fever and I was not looking forward to the prospect of a whole day locked inside with two kids, so I said I’d take them to the shopping centre, where Hunter likes to play on the climbing frame in the kids’ section.

When we got there it occurred to me that the doctor’s office is in that centre and since we were there anyway, we should stop in and get Hunter’s blood test results. I asked at reception and the receptionist said we’d need to wait in line to see the doctor. I explained that it was just an allergy test and it would only take two seconds for the doctor to tell us the result if she could just phone her. I also explained that last time we came in we were there for three hours and I really didn’t want to do that again.

No go, as expected. I asked how many people were already waiting to see our doctor. Eight. She pulled Hunter’s file and told us to “come back in an hour…no wait, better make it a bit longer than that”.

So we went off and Hunter played on the climbing equipment. Then we went to the parents’ room where I attempted to feed Hugo (waste of time. the boy’s head was spinning like something from the exorcist – far too much to see). Then I got lunch for Hunter and myself. Then, an hour and a half after we first went in, we called back into the doctor’s surgery. Still two people ahead of us.

We found some other play equipment and that occupied Hunter for 15 minutes. After that we headed back to the waiting area, where Hunter repeated her performance of last week: yelling, making rude comments, throwing herself on the floor. The usual.

After all that, we finally went in for the doctor to tell us the test was negative. No allergy to soy detected. It’s what I expected since she had a negative result on the skin prick test last year. It kind of felt like we had endured two trips to the doctor for nothing.

We don’t know what caused the hives but the doctor is not very concerned. She said she didn’t want to label Hunter allergic to soy with no evidence that she is, and I agree. She said it would be okay to try her on some small amounts of soy, and I agree with that, too.

We haven’t yet, but I am sure there is sushi in our future.

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Self-inflicted pain

Today is leigh’s first day back at school – aka my first day at home with both kids since school ended before Christmas.

Things started well. Hugo slept through again (go Hugo!) and Hunter didn’t get up until 7. She was in a good mood and being unusually pleasant and cooperative.

And then we went for our doctor’s appointment.

Why, why, why did I think I should go to the doctor on my own with both kids??

Really there was no alternative because our doctor only came back from leave today, but it just felt like a ridiculous thing to do once we got there and it all went to hell. Because that is what always happens at the doctor’s surgery.

We got there right on time for the 9.30 appointment, only for the receptionist to tell us the appointments were actually booked for 9am. Now, I don’t remember what time they told me when I rang, but I do remember reading back and confirming all the details after I typed them into outlook. But, whatever.

So we waited an HOUR to get in. Hunter spent that time going in and out of the play area, running around like she was crazy, yelling loudly, knocking Hugo over and generally being more and more cantankerous as time went on.

Hugo started out happily enough but was getting progressively crankier with each bump to the head, plus he was tired and hungry.

Then there was a problem with the file (there was a note popping up saying Hunter’s immunisations were not up to date, but they are. We declined the MMR when she was 12 months old, but we did the paperwork for that at the time). It took 20 minutes to get that fixed.

And then Hunter had to have a blood test at the end of it all. But I’ll get to that in a minute.

We were there to talk about Hugo’s possibly-turned eye, Hunter’s mini head and Hunter’s maybe-allergic reaction to soy sauce.

I’d been thinking Hugo’s left eye has a slight tendency to turn inward but the doctor thought the problem, if there is one, might be with his right eye, which she thought was just a touch sluggish when following the light. That makes sense – if he’s able to turn his left eye more effectively than his right then the left one could look turned in.

Anyway, she agreed that it’s very subtle and she’s not especially concerned but she’s referred him to an opthalmologist anyway.

Then she measured Hunter’s head and indeed it’s at the bottom of the chart. She’s sending her back to the pediatrician but again is not too worried since Hunter’s development is right on track, and since there’s probably nothing anyone can do anyway.

Eventually we got around to talking about the allergic reaction. She (and everyone else) we encountered tried suggesting it was some additive in the soy sauce. I don’t know why, but it really annoyed me when people kept mentioning the possibility as though we were so stupid that we would not have realised food stuffs occasionally contain ingredients not listed in the product title.

We did have the good sense to look at the label after it happened. The only additive was sodium glutamate in one of the bottles of soy. The other bottle had no additives.

 Anyway the doc ordered a RAST test, mainly because the skin prick test requires a trip to the ped then the allergist and takes time and money. From what I have read (and I confess I haven’t read that widely) I don’t feel that confident that the blood test will give a reliable result. It seems like it’s known for false positives and false negatives. But I guess I’ll wait and see what cames back and take it from there.

Hunter was a real trooper with the blood test, mainly because she didn’t really know what to expect. She cried just a little when the needle went in but stopped the second the nurse mentioned the possibility of a lolly when it was over.

Meanwhile, I was holding hunter so hugo was left to his own devices strapped in the stroller, and he screamed bloody murder the whole time.

Our quick trip to the doctor took three hours and I am already counting down to the next school holidays.

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