A Role for Follow-up
I feel that we, as allergists, need a better way to more thoroughly address the real-life issues that so often plague the lives of food allergy families. There must be a stronger link between food allergy families and the allergist’s office.
What would this look like? Maybe it’s a mandatory second appointment with the allergist or a nurse, or a one-on-one family meeting with a veteran food allergy family during which they share their favorite sources of information, recipes, tips and support services. Perhaps it’s a follow-up phone call the evening after a food challenge or group meetings run by the allergist’s office for his or her patients.
Since the completion of my fellowship, I have not gone back to seeing patients in the clinic and I have struggled to find the best way for me to serve the food allergic community. In the future I would love to be a part of a follow-up appointment as both the allergist and the veteran food allergy mom, but until I can make this concept a reality back in the hospital or through consultation, I started a blog in an attempt to do this virtually. Through this blog I provide education and advocacy, first-hand experience and mostly, friendship.
When I began to fall apart in this allergic life, it was with the support from my family, my medical colleagues, and other food-allergic families that I was able to be put back together again.
I want to be one of the people who help to revive and strengthen other food allergy families. I want them to remember exactly where they were when their heart, once broken by food allergy, finally started to heal.
Sarah Boudreau-Romano’s blog is Theallergistmom.com. Three of her four children are allergic to multiple foods. Their combined list is: milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, soy, wheat, oat, corn, green peas, beans, mustard, sesame, fish, shellfish, grapes, cranberry and bananas.
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