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    Gregory Metz, MD posted:
    I am very excited about joining your WebMD community. I am an allergist with a personal and family history of allergies and asthma. I look forward to discussing asthma-related topics with you and hearing about your personal experiences.I will be working with Dr. Monica Kraft, a pulmonologist and active asthma researcher, to answer your training questions and particiate in the community?s discussions.

    We are grateful for this opportunity to participate in this Exchange with you all.
    Chris_WebMD_Staff responded:
    Welcome Dr. Metz ! It's wonderful to have the experts among us and someone who can relate as well!

    Thank you Dr. Metz
    MaHenHere responded:
    My 19yr old daughter is RAST latex, nuts, plums and has had serious reactions. Carries andepi-pen and has asthma, too.

    As she understands, the Meningitis vaccine contains latex in the vial stopper. What has your experience been in giving this vaccine in your practice to those who have severe latex allergies, or is there one available w/o the latex stopper?

    Thanks you and welcome.
    tennisdancer05 responded:
    Thanks for joining! I have a quick question how can i prevent pressure on my lungs that make me not be able to breathe at night aside from sleeping sitting up in a chair, because I find sleeping sitting up to be uncomfortable?
    jis4judy responded:
    Hi Dr Metz
    I had asthma for over 60 years well I embarked on a nutrition Quest that had me eating a high nutrition diet with
    an elimination of most proccessed foods.. about 3 years into my plan I lost some weight and my asthma went away
    I am thnking it was the proccessed foods that was causeing my asthma all those years ..
    I had been treated for allergys I was allergic to grass trees dust mold just about everything lit up on my tests, I had been tested and treated about 4 times in my life
    well what I wanted to ask is it likely that the asthma could come back ? I am not gonna eat proccessed foods ever again so maybe I finally after all these years found a cure for myself .. I haven;t needed to take any medicine for the last 3 years it really feels good to breathe normally and not lose sleep because of wheezing. in the night.
    I used to take slo bid daily abuteral and Qvar daily as well
    Now nothing
    what do you think?
    Hugs Judy:)
    Gregory M Metz, MD replied to jis4judy's response:
    Glad to hear you are feeling better. I do not know of a mechanism by which processed foods leads to asthma symptoms, but if you have noticed an improvement with avoidance of processed food that is great. If your symptoms return, however, I would see your doctor to see if you need any other interventions.
    deluxehd replied to Gregory M Metz, MD's response:
    My own experience has been that sulfites in most processed foods cause my asthma to trigger. I also react to wheat (gluten) products. I don't want this message to come across that I am bashing the medical field. But why is it that I can find a lot of material (on reputiable websites) about sulfites/glutens/foods causing asthma attacks, yet drs don't recognize it? I believe there are more people out there reacting to foods but aren't aware. I went from eating anything I wanted to only being able to eat a handful of foods.
    jis4judy replied to deluxehd's response:
    Hi deluxe
    I think most doctors treat symptoms they rarely look for causes only allergist look to find explainations for our episodes...of asthma. and to study proccessed foods would be an attack on the industry .. thank goodness trans fats are exposed.. that took a while to get that menace noticed..
    I am not sure which proccessed foods were my triggers I am sure it wasn;t from weight loss because I was skinny most of my life and still had the asthma..I was a big potato chip and ice cream eater as a child those things are seldom on my meal plan now...
    Hugs Judy:)
    breathefreevita replied to jis4judy's response:
    Hi everyone,
    Food sensitivity is common amongst certain groups of asthmatics. For example, milk allergy is one of the most common allergies amongst children and can trigger asthma attacks. If you're sensitive to sulfites or gluten, the best thing you can do is simply to cut it out of your diet. Many processed foods contain sulfites and that may be why they are trigger asthma attacks for you, Judy. I'm not certain as I don't know your medical history nor am I a doctor, however it's just a thought. Ultimately, even if you don't have asthma, avoiding all that junk food is good for your health. Choosing healthier foods is best. If you feel that you're not getting all the nutrients you need every day, taking a multivitamin can help bridge that gap. I take BreatheFree Multivitamin - it's designed specifically for people with asthma and is recommended by doctors here in Santa Barbara, CA.
    Gregory M Metz, MD replied to jis4judy's response:
    I definitely agree that patients with asthma have several triggers some of which are food. Food allergic patients may experience hives, abdominal pain and/or a flare in their asthma upon consumption of these foods. There is less data regarding the role of food additives in causing allergic reactions or asthma. Previously, it was thought that Tartrazine (FD&C Yellow #5) could trigger asthma, but subsequent studies utilizing Tartrazine-free diets in asthmatics did not improve asthma symptoms. A review of the available studies looking at Tartrazine and asthma did not support a causal role. There have been a few case reports of asthma due to Sunset Yellow dye, but the exact cause of these asthma flares were not confirmed. Carmine is a natural food color taken from the prickly pear cactus parasite and there are a few reported cases of asthma due to it but most of these patients were exposed to high levels in the workplace. Asthmatic reactions to sulfites do occur. A prior study showed that consumption of sulfites >100ppm was able to cause changes in lung function as measured by breathing tests. Foods that have >100ppm of sulfites include dried fruit, some wines, molasses and sauerkraut. Overall, it is thought that less than 4% of adult asthmatics are sensitive to sulfites. As an allergist, I frequently recommend a food and symptom diary to try and identify specific triggers of symptoms. If you notice that foods make your symptoms worse and you can avoid those foods that is great. Just make sure you are able to continue eating a nutritious and balanced diet. If you are looking for help, an allergist can help you sort out whether your symptoms are due to or triggered by food allergy. (references from Middleton's Allergy, vol2 chapter 66).
    jis4judy replied to breathefreevita's response:
    Hi breathe Free
    I was basically born asthmatic I was in emergency rooms often in my childhood and as a young adult . I was takeing tedral My parents accually boarded me out to a family in Phoenix AZ hopeing that the dry air would be better for me . I picked up allergies to burmuda grass that grows all over Phoenix..
    No luck there,,
    when I was 29 I was in the hospital for nearly a month unable to breathe on myown I needed the intraveinus and around the clock care .. off and on emergency room visits till I had finished the last couse of allergy shots in my 40s I was takeing 1200 mg of slo bid a day to control the asthjma and useing abuteral and Vanceril first then Qvar when vanceril became unavailable
    when I went through menopause I gained 100 pounds sootheing myself and the asthma was bad then too //
    well when I turned 61 I started a healthy diet to try and fix things that were going wrong in my body mainly eye problems
    Macular degeneration//
    well I lost 97 of those 100 pounds and improved my health as well as my eyes even got a bit better.. the big surprise was the asthma going away ,,, 3 years no medicine needed I am now 68 kind of a long time to grow out of it right?

    Hugs Judy:-)
    deluxehd replied to Gregory M Metz, MD's response:
    Thank you for responding and providing the information. I see an allergist,pulmo and dietician. I have been keeping a food diary since February 2009. When I'm trying to pinpoint a trigger, I will eat 1 food at a time to see if there is a reaction. I guess that I fall into the 4% you mentioned. I'm not sure my allergist is totally on board with the food triggers, she claims I have silent acid reflux. I can take 1 bite of a food and within 5 minutes the symptoms will start. Unless I use my rescue inhaler, the symptoms progressively get worse. I was skin tested for allergies prior to my development of food allergies and tested negative for foods. I was then RAST tested after development and still tested negative for foods that I knew I couldn't eat. It's confusing and frustrating. For some reason I feel the need to have a piece of paper verifying my food allergies. I just hope that I can help someone else. I feel that I am going thru this for a reason. Thanks for listening.
    heidirose31 replied to deluxehd's response:
    Please help. Last October, I found out I had severe allergies and asthma. Then, I got a flu shot, got the flu, had my carpet cleaned, and now, I can smell everything. I researched and found out the intensification of smells is called parosmia, but along with the smells, my lungs stay permanently inflamed. I feel like I breathe cold air (like when you run outside) all the time and that someone is scratching the bronchial region of my lungs with fingernails. Even my tongue burns. I have been on prednisone since October, Neurontin to help control the smells and help with the nerve pain, and I just started Zolair. I tried allergy shots, but I am allergic to them. I have switched inhalers multiple times, and without the inhalers, I have asthm,a attacks along with the smells. I currently use pulmicort and zopenex. I also take Zyzal and minimal hydrocodone for pain. I have seen a neurologist, allergist, rheumatolgistand pulmonary doctor at Baptist, but no one has a clue. I've also had three chest x-rays, an MRI to check for brain tumors, a sinus CAT scan, tests for lupus, thyroid problems, rheumatoid arthritis, and fibromyalgia. They all came out clear. I wanted to make sure because my sister was the first case of adolescent fibromyalgia and received free health care.They say that no one has ever come to them with my symptoms. the pulmonary doctor guesstimated that I have permanent nerve damage from a viral infection in both my lungs and nose and that it will eventually go away, but bwhen I try to go off the prednisone, I smell more anf hurt to the point that i am disoriented. The lung doctor suggested seriously upping the neurontin to eliminate the need for prednisone since it helps with peripheral neuropathy. Please help; I'm desperate. I am on my way to Duke as soon as I can get an appointment. Is there such a thing as a chemical sensitivity specialist. I am so depressed----I am a medical anomaly.
    Heidi aka Desperately Seeking a Diagnosis
    heidirose31 replied to jis4judy's response:
    What diet do you use? Maybe it would help me.
    heidirose31 replied to heidirose31's response:
    I also take Zolair now and Nexium for acid reflux.

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