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Old 08-29-2012, 06:40 AM   #1
Brit1988 Brit1988 is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2012
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Nut allergy & elevated IgE levels

I got blood test results back to day for a nut allergy. It turns out I'm allergic to Brazil nuts (to a life threatening degree), Almonds (to a moderate degree) and Hazel nuts (to a high degree). I'm not allergic to peanuts. The results also show I have very highly elevated levels of IgE in my blood.

This correlates with my past experiences of eating peanuts for years without a reaction. But at the start of 2012 I suffered Anaphylaxis after eating a mixed nuts bar containing Brazil nuts and Almonds.

Ever since that experience I've been having a lot of respiratory problems coming and going. Symptoms have included difficulty breathing (especially when laying down or leaning over), chest pain, a rubbing feeling like fluid moving around my lung (externally, not internally), burning sensations and more recently almost constant indigestion. A chest X-Ray in April ruled out lung cancer. The only symptoms that I have right now, today, are a wheezy cough and a strange rumbling sensation when I inhale, a bit like a wheeze without the noise.

Unfortunately it has been a bit of a guessing game getting to the bottom of this. One GP gave me antibiotics, another Naproxen, and today my GP prescribed a 'Seretide 50 Evohaler' for my respiratory symptoms. These are all 'best guesses' as to the underlying condition, but I'd really like to *know* for sure what is going on. I feel a lot closer with these test results in hand, as they point to elevated IgE levels which makes asthma sound a likely candidate. I had childhood asthma but then didn't experience it again for a decade, so these changes surely reflect a shift in my biology that can be tamed, at least to a degree.

But I want to tackle the underlying cause, not plaster over symptoms for the rest of my days. Here are my questions:
  1. What are healthy IgE levels?
  2. What are ku/L and kUA/L in U/ml? I can only find guideline levels in the latter unit but my test results are in the former units.
  3. Is there anything that can be done to lower my IgE levels?
  4. Could this be anything other than a recurrence of asthma? Taking asthma pumps so far hasn't made an impact on many of the physical sensations, though it does seem to help reduce wheezing