Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Celiac Tests and Gluten Intolerance

Did you know that pre-packaged original popcorn packets have gluten in them?

Gluten is in EVERYTHING!!

Or at least it feels like it when you are attempting to keep your 2 year old son away from it.  


Phoenix, our two year old, has been struggling with his health lately. He started loosing weight, getting sick all the time, regressed 100% in potty training, wouldn't sleep, had diarrhea so bad it burnt his skin almost instantly. He was uncontrollably sooky, grumpy, lethargic and not himself at all.  He turned into a newborn-like 2 year old who wanted to be carried 24/7 and sleep with me.


{Warning TMI: Poop. Skip the next light coloured paragraphs if you want}

I've never taken so many photos of poop in my life! For the Doctors and Dietitian to see what I was seeing.  What was I seeing? Food--whole food! not just corn which we all see, but things like his breakfast cereal, watermelon, and lentils etc. Mucus: in gobs and covering the whole thing. Colour: light cream coloured and occasionally light pumpkin coloured.  
I'll keep this photo small.... Gross factor 1 bazillion. 


Poop, although gross, is such a great indicator of health... or lack of. Phoenix, since starting solids has struggled with constipation, rashes/eczema, allergies. 




The Phoenix List so far.........

He is allergic to: Eggs (white and yolk),
                           Certain types of fish/shellfish,
                           Certain types of nuts (thankfully not Peanuts!)

He seems to be intolerant to: Lactose/Dairy/Gluten.

He gets: Eczema
              Regular Ear infections (due to small ducts- but that's for a different day)

Allergy skin prick test


---------------------

Our journey so far.

I took him to our local GP, with that crazy mumma look in my eye, told him the list of symptoms and what I thought was going on. I 100% trust my mummy instinct and the signs that something was not right in his little body.

The Doctor ordered some follow up tests and thought that specialists should be contacted. He rang the Dietican while we were still there in the appointment and booked us in for the following week with the allergy specialist and dietician.

Little side profile.


One week later, Phoenix had his second allergy skin prick test (it's a yearly thing until he's 7), a blood test with 6 viles taken! I didn't think he had anything left after that!! A lollipop after made the brave boy very happy. Stool sample sent off. We also saw the dietician who (after the test results came back) set out a month long elimination diet with 3 weeks of challenges to follow.

Phoenix's blood tests came back negative for Celiac, with the "*" that for his age the test can be inaccurate. His iron levels were incredibly low.

Next Steps.

Since the Celiac test came back negative we had the go-ahead to completely remove gluten and dairy from his diet for a month (until his symptoms had cleared up.)  An elimination diet and then 3 weeks of very structured "challenges" to try and pinpoint the issue. 

Week 1 will test gluten,
Week 2 will test dairy,  
Week 3 will test lactose.  


If there are symptoms during the week then we remove it from his diet again until he has 3 days clear of symptoms again. 


Where are we now?
"Gluten free, Dairy free"

One week and a bit into being gluten and dairy free Phoenix was still not himself, poops still wrong, clingy, sooky, cranky etc... I just put it down to some sort of withdrawals from dairy/gluten (which is all of this is like) I was so confused as to why he wasn't improving!! Frustrating!!

Then it was brought to my attention by my (also GF) friend that the popcorn that my son loves so much had gluten in it!!! WHAT!!!!!!! I thought I had checked that??!!! It's original popcorn! Should just be salt and popcorn but no! Oh-My-Lanta! One whole week down the dunny! (that's a toilet FYI) 

If it was possible for someone to literally have smoke billowing from their ears from being so annoyed- that would have been me. 

I drop kicked that popcorn so hard out of the house I'm sure I heard it yelp. 

Where are we now? Take 2!!

So technically 4 days really-really-really Gluten Free and Dairy Free and I have started to see a new kid.  He is happier, he has some energy, he is mischievous again, and not as many tears.  4 DAYS and already a little improvement!!

He is on an Iron supplement, and a children's probiotic daily as well.

Being Gluten and Dairy free may be expensive and time consuming. But completely worth it.


This has been one of his favourite spots... ie anywhere attached to me.

--------------------------

As you can probably tell. I haven't had a lot of time to make things. But as he improves I'm getting more time to think about doing something other than just surviving.

For now, surviving is a great option.

xx



Would do anything for our little Mythical Bird.