Child Allergy Geelong provides comprehensive allergy services and works closely with consultants in allergy and immunology for very complex patients. We have the advantage of a background in general paediatrics including respiratory, neonatal, gut and developmental paediatrics, hence we feel our service can offer more than simple allergy assessment and follow up.
Child Allergy Geelong provides allergy assessment for children up to 18 years.
With food allergy, it is important to record as much as possible:
- the type of food (even a photo of the ingredients if unsure),
- the amount ingested,
- the time until a reaction was noticed (minutes to hours) and
- the type of reaction – mouth tingling, redness, swelling, rash (photos if possible!), vomiting or breathing difficulties
For environmental allergies (asthma or hay fever), it is helpful to record:
- Timing of symptoms (night, early morning, daytime, school, visiting, sleepovers, holidays)
- inside or outside the house
- season (spring summer, autumn, winter); and
- animal contacts
Bring whatever past medical records you have or tests done – ask your doctor for a copy if possible as it all helps clarify the diagnosis and management plan.
We are a family oriented practice and pride ourselves on leaving patients and parents with a clear safe pathway for the future with allergy, anaphylaxis and asthma plans and teaching and revision of Epipen use and indications.
Skin prick testing is the primary mode of testing for immediate IgE-mediated allergy. Skin prick tests provide high quality information for immediate onset food allergy or environmental allergy that may cause asthma or hay fever. Skin prick tests are generally painless and are performed on the child’s back as it is more accurate than the forearm. A young or anxious child is seated on the parent’s lap facing them and cuddled by the parent. The test is read after 15 minutes and the results discussed with the family.
We have the ability to skin prick testing with commercial extracts for common food allergens including milk, eggs and nuts. We carry many extracts to environmental allergens including house dust mite, animal dander, pollens and moulds. We use extracts, equipment and techniques identical to the Royal Children’s Hospital Melbourne so reproducibility and interpretation of results is easier. Some foods (fruit, seafood, fish) may not have commercial extract and hence require the family to bring the food to the appointment. The quantity required is no more than a 20c coin size and the foods must be in snap lock bags to avoid contamination. Please check with our staff prior to your appointment.
Antihistamine (e.g. Zyrtec, Claratyne, Telfast, Phenergan) and some other medications and should not be administered for at least 5 days before skin prick test as they may interfere with the tests. Please check with our staff if in doubt.
Despite the testing carrying very low risk of side effect to patients, a consent form must be signed for the tests which are done under supervision. Because of the very rare event of an allergic reaction to the test, we carry oxygen adrenaline and antihistamine.
We also provide lung function testing (spirometry and flow volume loop) for those over 6 years. It is important to measure current lung function for children with persistent asthma, especially for those who also have anaphylaxis who must maintain optimal asthma control.
SUB LINGUAL IMMUNOTHERAPY
Our child allergy service is experienced in house dust mite and grass sublingual immunotherapy with over 70 patients successfully managed with this innovative and successful therapy.
ORAL FOOD CHALLENGES
In 2016 we will introduce a quality inpatient oral food challenge service at St John of God Geelong based upon agreed protocols between ASCIA and the Australian Paediatric Society.