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Monday, April 17, 2017

And so begins allergy season....


So, these are a FEW of the medications floating around my house. (Kind of sad, I know.....)

These are only our allergy meds, I didn't include any of our asthma medications. 

The reason I took this photo is to show that there isn't a one - size - fits - all treatment for any medical problem. Hubby & I and all 3 kids have allergies and we all treat them differently. Some of us take pills (name brand or generic), some of us like nose sprays (also name brand or generic).

My kids allergies are worse than mine, they all had to have 5 year's worth of allergy shots.

Allergy shots can help when you are on high doses of allergy medicine and still not finding relief. Before she started allergy shots, daughter Kitty could easily sneeze 30 times in a row (every day, all day long), even while taking allergy medicine. 

So, Asthma Doc tested her for allergies and found out she is allergic to everything (trees, flowers, bushes, grass, cats, dogs, horses, etc.) The only thing she wasn't allergic to was rats. Shot Nurse said we could get a pet rat!  

Yeah, funny....(insert eye roll here)

So, after 5 year's worth of allergy shots, Kitty can now manage allergies with allergy medicine.(Some people may not need allergy medicine after allergy shots, but she still does.)

Everyone is different. 

Some people like allergy pills, some like nose sprays.

And with pills and nose sprays, some people feel the name brand works best, while others are okay with the generic version.

In an interview with Huffington Post,  C. Michael White, Pharm.D., Professor and Head, Department of Pharmacy Practice, University of Connecticut said:

“Some patients will tolerate a brand name medication but when they switch medications, they simply do not do as well. The reason may be that that while the blood concentrations of the brand name medication are very similar, what the tablets are made out of can vary. So while the average patient does as well, not everyone will. If you are that outlier, you are better off on the branded medication or another generic. I usually recommend trying two generic versions before giving up and moving back to a brand name drug because again, the costs are much cheaper." 

My daughter is one of those "outliers" that does better on the name brand. But both of my sons use generic versions of allergy medicine. Go figure.

You may have to try a few brands of pills or nose spray and see what works best on you.

Pretty soon, you too can have a pile of allergy medicine like the photo above! 

Even if the trees and flowers cause me endless allergy misery, they really are pretty! And they smell amazing!

I try to always look on the bright side of things!

 

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

RECALL on Ventolin inhalers


I just saw another recall, this one for an Albuterol inhaler, Ventolin.

If you're not sure what your rescue inhaler is called (most people just go by the color), Ventolin is the greyish- blue one just above the word "asthma" in the photo.

If you have one of those, check the lot and date for a recall.



"GSK Plc. is voluntarily recalling more than 593,000 Ventolin asthma inhalers from U.S. hospitals, pharmacies, retailers and wholesalers due to a defect that may cause them to deliver fewer doses of the medicine than indicated, the British drugmaker said on Tuesday."

The FDA (Federal Drug Administration) has a link with the specifics of the recall. 

Code Information:
Lot #: 6ZP9848
Exp 03/18

6ZP0003, 6ZP9944,
Exp 04/18
If your inhaler falls under that lot # or expiration date, call your pharmacy or doctor. You will want to make sure you get a replacement as soon as possible!

You don't EVER want to be without rescue medication. Ironically enough, I am having a hard time typing this because I just used my nebulizer for a breathing treatment and my hands are REALLY shaky.

Asthma can be sooooo much fun!

 Good luck and keep breathing my friends!

Monday, April 3, 2017

RECALL on Epi Pens!





If you use an Epi Pen for yourself or your kids, check your lot number because there is a recall on 13 lots of Epi Pens. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said :


"This recall is due to the potential that these devices may contain a defective part that may result in the devices’ failure to activate."
 and:

"While the number of reported failures is small, EpiPen products that potentially contain a defective part are being recalled because of the potential for life-threatening risk if a severe allergic reaction goes untreated."
 So, how do you know if your Epi Pen is defective? The FDA says that those purchased from December 17, 2015 - July 1, 2016 could have a possible defect.

You can check the FDA's website for the dates and lot numbers on your Epi Pen.

For those of you with food allergies, you know how scary it can be to think that your Epi Pen might not work! I am allergic to seafood and Son #2 is allergic to all tree nuts. We are always watching for foods that may cause us to have anaphylaxis (a severe allergic reaction.)

In fact, we were at a family dinner last night and there was a delicious looking dessert. Family assured us that it was okay for Son #2 to eat, because there were only nuts on half of the dessert. Unfortunately, that means the ENTIRE dessert is contaminated. I love family, but since they don't have food allergies, they don't understand cross contamination 

Since Son #2 and I both had accidental exposures last fall, we are REALLY nervous. Both of our reactions were mild, but new antibodies were formed. Which means the next exposure could be much more serious! Cleveland Clinic explains the science behind this:

"IgE antibodies are generated against food allergens after exposure through the gastrointestinal tract, respiratory tract, or nonintact skin. The clinical manifestations depend upon the characteristics of the offending proteins, the genetic susceptibility of the person, and the route of sensitization. Food allergy is more common in patients who have other allergic conditions, such as atopic dermatitis and allergic rhinitis, and who have a family history of atopy."

 So, we will keep inspecting all the food we eat. We're not afraid to ask the restaurant, caterer, friend, or family member what's in the recipe. 

Our life depends on it!

 
One final warning from FDA:

"As stated on the product label, consumers should always seek emergency medical help right away after using their EpiPens, particularly if the device did not activate."