This is our daughter Isabella and this is her story, living with life threatening food allergies.
Since the age of 8 months, our beautiful daughter was diagnosed with allergies to Dairy, Egg, Tree Nuts and Peanut and as such she carries an Epipen, everywhere she goes.
Isabella has had several allergic reactions to ingesting the tiniest amounts of these foods, landing her in hospital. She is very sensitive to these foods, so much so that she has continual allergic reactions, just from her skin coming into contact with tiny residues of these foods (sitting at someone else’s dining table even after being wiped cleaned has caused numerous reactions and likewise being touched by someone who has just eaten). Isabella has also suffered from airborne reactions (eggs frying in a kitchen and from a packet of nuts opened in her vicinity).
I know to some, it is hard to understand how serious and life threatening food allergies can be but it is very real and like living in a minefield, with food being all around us. We worry every day that Isabella may have an allergic reaction that will threaten her life. Whilst we always make sure her Epipen is with her, we also know that there are no guarantees that it will save her life, as there has been a number of cases where lives have been lost despite the use of the Epipen/Adrenaline.
As her parents, it is hard to see what has become of our daughter and her/our way of life, whilst living with allergies. We have had to leave the room more than once, to take a moment. It is upsetting to see your child frozen with fear at the sight of food being consumed in her near vicinity and experience anxiety and social isolation.
Currently, there is no treatment for food allergies in Australia, so we have made a big decision to relocate temporarily to America to undertake a treatment called Oral Immunotherapy (OIT) for a period of 6 to 8 months, with Dr Douglas Jones in Layton Utah, who is having a high rate of success. We hope Isabella will be another success story and can go on to live a life without fear and participate in all social events.
The cost of the treatment, insurance, flights, accommodation for a 6 to 8 month period, will be substantial. We will be leaving Australia late April 2018. As we will be on a medical visa, we will be unable to undertake employment whilst in America.
We are not ones to ask for help but when it comes to our daughter and her life, we will do whatever we can to help her. Please help if you can, even the smallest of donations will help. You can choose to keep your name anonymous when donating.
Thank you for taking the time to read our story.
- Dave McKay
- Richard and Katherine Dampney
- Stephanie Smith Smith
- Tracey Rendoth
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