Allergic reaction to meal was real shock
GOING out for lunch with work colleagues and ending up in A&E after suffering a severe allergic reaction was enough to put me off eating out for months.
As time has passed I have convinced myself that dining out will not result in a hospital admission — having reached the age of 27 with no previous such experiences.
But what caused me to suffer an anaphylactic shock after eating a delicious, hearty meal of battered cod and chips — a meal I have had at other restaurants in the past — remains a mystery.
The reaction came on within minutes of eating the meal and within 20 minutes my face had swollen, my voice changed, I was unable to breathe through my nose and my hearing was muffled.
After initially shaking it off as something that would pass, taking an allergy tablet and calling NHS Direct for advice I soon started to fear, with no exaggeration, impending doom. I refused to allow colleagues to call an ambulance, conscious that I would be wasting their time. Lisa Schofield, the editor’s secretary and now my saviour, kindly drove me to the Royal Bolton Hospital by which time I was looking very flushed, had developed a nettle like rash over my arms, dark red clown-like arms and hands and had almost lost the ability to speak.
I was seen within a minute of arriving and the fantastic staff reassured me and injected me with steroids to reduce the reaction. I was discharged around eight hours later and the rest is history. I now carry two EpiPens, injections containing adrenaline, in case I experience a similar reaction.
While I await a second bout of allergy tests at a hospital to try to pinpoint the cause I decided to look into alternative testing available in the town, which is how I came across Andy Bentley.
NHS worker Mr Bentley, aged 39, conducts allergy testing as a hobby and a business in his free time at St George's Multi-Therapy Centre in Knowsley Street.
Having had a spate of severe eczema in the past year which has failed to clear after NHS ultra-violet light treatment and various prescribed lotions and potions I was keen to try anything that might help.
Mr Bentley has run his business for around 10 years and tests for allergies using MORA-Therapy. The non-invasive test involves simply holding a metal rod in one hand while Mr Bentley touches your thumb with a light pen. The process involves using a person’s own micro-electromagnetic energy. Biological frequencies are then measured and show whether you have an intolerance or not. The test follows a “therapy” which is said to make the test more specific.
The machinery can test for about 1,500 foods and non-food items ranging from wheat to mice, chemicals, additives and bacteria.
He became interested in the alternative therapy after his wife had stomach pains and her complexion looked grey. She underwent testing, which told her she had an intolerance to gluten. He said within weeks she noticed a dramatic change to her health, Mr Bentley said: “Quite a lot of the best results I see tend to be in children. I have done tests on a few children whose skin looks almost reptilian. When they avoid the foods they are intolerant to, within weeks parents have said it’s like having a different child.
“I know the testing works but people have to do their bit as well by avoiding certain things. It is difficult as lots of ingredients are hidden in different foods.“ Going into the tests with an open mind I was intrigued to see that the tests showed an intolerance to certain foods which I had a strong allergy to as a child and believed I had grown out of, including dairy produce. Diet Coke was also one of the things that showed up as me being intolerant to along with soya milk, which I have been drinking since being diagnosed with a dairy allergy as a child.
Mr Bentley said the body has a six to eight-week memory. He said avoidance of the foods does not have to be indefinitely for some allergies as the body can often tolerate the foods again once they are reintroduced after a break.
Although the cause of my anaphylactic reaction is still unknown, I have noticed a dramatic improvement to skin and well-being since cutting out the foods and drinks I did not agree with.
Acupuncture, Reiki, herbalism and hypnotherapy are among the other therapies available at St George’s Multi-Therapy Centre.
For more information visit multi-therapy.co.uk or call 01204 361463.
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