Boy Develops Potentially Deadly Food Allergies After Blood Transfusion

In a rare case, an eight-year-old Canadian boy developed an allergy to fish and nuts after receiving a blood transfusion during treatment for brain cancer.

The case study published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal reported that the boy, who had no history of allergies previously, reacted badly to salmon and peanuts within two weeks of the transfusion; Blood and skin prick tests revealed that he was (at least temporarily) allergic to nuts and fish and had to carry an adrenaline injector for emergencies.

The Canadian Blood Services tracked a donor with severe food allergies who had contributed platelets to the pooled transfusion involved. “It is very unusual to identify someone who experienced passive transfer of allergy from blood products,” says Julia Upton of the Hospital for Sick Children. While rare, it can still result in anaphylactic reactions to foods that were happily consumed (or at least tolerated) previously; “Importantly, this condition has an excellent prognosis and typically resolves within a few months.”

Thankfully, that was the result in this particular case.

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