Vanessa’s Story

I am on Pariet [rabeprazole sodium], Lipidor [atorvastatin] and Prozac [fluoxetine]. I carry an epipen and Clarityn. I am allergic to Zirtek [cetirizine] and also Ventolin [salbutamol]. My worse problem seems to be a reaction to perfume and of course the depression which is under control with Prozac and a year’s counselling. I can’t eat smoked food or oysters. I love wine but cannot drink spirits. I cannot take a bath as my urticaria comes out in hives – it’s alright, I shower! My one advantage is that I have a doctor’s letter allowing me to skip all those dreadful queues at the airport. I am also claiming disability (pensions don’t start here until 66). I convinced my reluctant doctor when she last saw me. She said that she never puts on perfume in case I have an appointment. I actually very rarely go to my GP. I said “how am I expected to go for a job interview when the interviewer could be wearing perfume or aftershave?” That convinced her. In my last job which I had for 14 years because I couldn’t change jobs, no one wore perfume near me, markers were banned, etc. etc.

[drug intolerance, intolerance to foods and drinks, reactions to perfume, depression, adult]