7 Yr Old with Absence Seizures and Discovered a Milk Allergy
So, where to start with our personal story?
We first noticed something was amiss in June of 2009. Our daughter, then 6, was playing softball in the yard with my husband and our son.
She was ready to bat and as my husband prepared to pitch, she dropped the bat and just stared at him for about 30 seconds and then told him she forgot what she was doing.
Now, this was immediately following his arrival from a 2 week stay in China. On numerous occassions while he was gone, I noticed that Cadence was not listening to me or would be staring right through me when I was talking to her. To be perfectly honest, I really thought she was just ignoring me, and I even punished her more than once.
The following day while at work, I was discussing it with my boss, and I heard absence seizures for the first time. He had a friend in high school that had absence seizures. We made an appointment with the pediatrician that day.
The pediatrician actually witnessed several seizures during our visit and referred us to Texas Childrens. Our appointment wait time to see the neurologist was 6 MONTHS! So here we were with a daughter having seizures and they wanted us to wait 6 MONTHS!!! She had a seizure at our son’s baseball game and her eyes actually rolled back a few weeks later. I was so freaked out that I drove her the 80 miles to Texas Children’s ER right then. Within 2 hours, we had blood work and a CT scan and were being admitted overnight for observation and an EEG the following morning. Now, while this ER visit expedited the neurology visit, I do not recommend running to the ER unnecessarily. The bill before insurance was over $6,000 and I am still making payments.
So, the EEG showed significant activity, even while sleeping. The neurologist said she was having 100 or more per day. After spending the night researching absence seizures thanks to friends that brought my laptop and free wi-fi in Houston, I found that you don’t necessarily have to medicate absence seizures. And quite frankly, after reading the side effects, I didn’t want to. However, the neurologist got his way when he mentioned a decline in education if she wasn’t medicated. We started on Zarontin immediately.
Almost one year later, Cadence has only had a few seizures (that I’ve noticed since they are so short) and the side effects were minimal and have disappeared (except for drowsiness). The seizures I noticed were after driving to Oklahoma for Thanksgiving and staying up late that weekend. The next set of seizures were during a bout of strep throat in March.
All that being said, let me move on to the discovered milk allergy… today as a matter of fact. I’m absolutely furious right now so be patient if I rant.
Around the same time the seizures onset, Cadence started complaining of a sore throat when she drank milk. I thought she just didn’t like milk and let it go. Gradually, she has added mac & cheese, pizza, then cheese all together, and finally ICE CREAM!!! When she gave up ice cream, I decided that I better have it checked out… ya know… just in case. I actually told her pediatrician on Thursday last week that I really thought she just didn’t like those things. The doctor called today and said she is VERY allergic to milk but not enough to require an epiphen although the “sore” throat is probably actually a “swollen” throat.
Now, after typing in “absence seizures and food allergies” in Google, I find all this information about the connection between the two. Can someone out here in the world wide web EXPLAIN to me WHY the neurologist said they THINK absence seizures are HEREDITARY and not RECOMMEND a FOOD ALLERGY test????? If I have medicated my daughter for 10 MONTHS when I simply could have removed dairy from her diet, I will be furious!!!
Obviously, I realize that removing dairy from our diet is not THAT easy; however, using a medication that changes the way your BRAIN works seems a lot more DANGEROUS!!!
So… I’ll be searching for more answers as the night goes on and will be exhausted at work tomorrow. What I’ll be looking for specifically… can a milk allergy cause absence seizures??????
JL TAMAN BENDUNGAN ASAHAN 5 JAKARTA PUSAT, JAKARTA INDONESIA 10210
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editor in chief : Widodo Judarwanto,pediatrician
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