Raymond’s Story

I have been diagnosed with Idiopathic Anaphylaxis (IA).

It all started at the tender age of 48 when I woke in the night, head ringing, itching all over and when I looked in the mirror a face the size of a football. I uttered the famous words to my wife “I think there’s a problem”. Dashed off to A&E and they did the usual hook-up for someone who’s going into anaphylactic shock due to an allergic reaction. Of course, the correct course of action at the time. I have never ever been allergic to anything in my life, having lived all over the UK, 3 years in Malta and have worked abroad in Africa, Mauritius and lectured in Russia.

My first consultant was a dermatologist who could not find anything to which I reacted. We did the full elimination diet stuff – lived off fresh white fish, white rice and leaf vegetables and water, that’s all, no salt, spices, fruit or other veg, just those 4 things + water – his pet theory was that it was either a reaction to salicylates (hence the elimination of just about everything that grows) and also residual antibiotics in the food chain (hence just fresh, not farmed, sea fish). Had an episode on this after 6 weeks! So, unless it was one of the food items, then this was a blank. Added in new foods every few days for a few months this time under the eyes of a consultant dietician, kept full diary of any reactions – zilch! Loads of blood tests etc showed nothing at all, RAT’s etc.

[idiopathic anaphylaxis, IA, adult]