From diagnosis to management
After a series of uncomfortable symptoms, Adriana reads about food allergy on an article by SOS Alergia and finally heads towards an improved quality of life, thanks to proper diagnosis and management advice.
My name is Adriana, I am 63 years old and today I can say with total certainty that I am allergic to nickel, soy, citrus, chocolate and nuts. I am only able to say this after a long journey of isolated episodes that were present throughout my life and took different forms as the years went by.
The first alarming situation was when at age 39 I experienced an allergic reaction to a medication, this time it was not a simple dermatitis, it was a temporary cardiac problem that had me in the coronary unit until it could be verified that in “some cases ” the drug I was taking could cause these inconveniences. It took me a long time to regain confidence and accept that I had not had a heart problem but a drug allergy reaction.
Years passed by and the dermatitis kept increasing. What once was a localized and passing symptom, was now something that was extending without going away. I had small blisters on my hands, and rashes on the folds of my arms and legs, on my back, and the despair from the unbearable itching in the places where I had the rash.
Simultaneously with dermatitis, I had other symptoms, such as itchy throat and ears, post-nasal discharge, headache, which I now know are all allergy symptoms, but back at that time unfortunately no one could diagnose me.
I spent months doing tests that gave no concrete answer and doing useless diets.
But everything changed the day I read an article about Food Allergy from. S.O.S Alergia, what the symptoms are, the number of people who suffer …A new door was opening …
I scheduled a consultation. Tests were taken: back patches and arm testing. After the third consultation, I got the results. “You are allergic to nickel, soy, citrus, chocolate and nuts”.
Now I know what I can and can´t eat, but also that I should be careful with jewelry and any metal prosthesis.
I discovered that nickel was the hidden enemy present on everything I put on my table every day, in fruits and vegetables, in tea, in whole-grain breads, in baking powder, in flour, also in the oatmeal that I used to soothe the itching on my back, in the hair dye…. It was devastating, but I had a diagnosis and the word of the physician’s team that with a treatment and a diet I would soon get better.
So, I started living a life free of nickel, soy, and citrus and the most incredible thing was that my body reacted positively to the first super strict diet I faced. Slowly the post-nasal drip, headaches and dermatitis began to disappear. Then I understood that I was on the right road!
But the day to day was complicated. I was always a very thin person, and when I changed my eating habits, I lost a lot of weight and couldn’t find a way to replace what I couldn’t eat.
I had to spend a lot of time organizing my food, which was different from what I prepared for the rest of my family.
I discovered that eating out at a restaurant was an odyssey and having coffee at a bar with a croissant was impossible.
With the support of the SOS Alergia team, I gradually moved forward. The nutritionists advised me, they recommended me a diet and prepared the recipes with the elements that I could eat, so that I could eat rich, varied and without losing weight.
Also, with their support I was able to take a trip and learn to take care of myself beyond my home.
Surely there will be other tests to cross and other roads to travel, but it is part of life and the most important thing is that I know I can count on them to help me navigate it.
Today I want to tell all this team of wonderful people, that I feel admiration and respect for their work, because they not only assisted me professionally, they contained me and encouraged me so that I could achieve what I had achieved.
Thank you all. Lots of love, Adriana.