Since 1998, pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers have been advised that if there is a history of allergy in the family – including eczema, asthma and hayfever – they should avoid peanuts to reduce the risk of their child developing nut allergies. Weaning information has also changed, with “at risk” families being advised to delay the introduction of peanuts.
I doubt the advice would have helped Thomas. I was avoiding feeding him peanuts anyway. I did, however, regularly eat peanut butter while pregnant and breastfeeding.
Doctors cannot predict what will happen if Thomas ever eats nuts in the future. Skin tests showed a positive allergy to all nuts and a second attack is usually worse.
It is now two and a half years since he suffered anaphylactic shock, but the memory of that teatime never fades. I know that only strict vigilance will protect him.
The Anaphylaxis Campaign can be reached on 01252 542029 or visit their website