Austin Independent School District Child Saved With Epi-shot at School
A middle schooler attending a school in the Austin Independent School District (AISD) who was undiagnosed with food allergies recently suffered a severe reaction at school after eating a cashew. The mother describes that within a minute after ingestion, he began to experience life-threatening anaphylaxis with vomiting, hives, and severe difficulty breathing. Fortunately, the reaction was promptly recognized by his school nurse and she quickly administered the school’s epinephrine and called EMS. He responded immediately to the epi shot and his breathing began to improve. He was transported to the emergency room for further treatment and observation and was discharged home later that evening.
Austin, Texas Board Certified Allergist, Allen K. Lieberman, M.D. of Austin Family Allergy and Asthma comments:
“This case is the perfect example of why the stock epinephrine law for schools (refer to the Bill- SB 66) is so critical. As this child was undiagnosed with food allergies, he did not have his own personal epinephrine device at school. SB 66 allows the school to stock epinephrine and frees the nurse to administer the life-saving drug without fear of liability to anyone experiencing an allergic reaction. The epinephrine is there to be used in an emergency situation, similar to an automatic defibrillator or a fire extinguisher.
This also illustrates the importance of food allergy awareness and the emergency training of school personnel. The nurse was able to immediately assess the child and the severity of the situation and she had the means to treat on the spot without delay.
It is wonderful to discuss a case such as this where everything was in place to save the child’s life; epinephrine, awareness, and training all came together. Too often we hear of heartbreaking stories in the news of a food allergy fatality due to inadequate training and the unavailability or unwillingness to use epinephrine. That certainly may have been the case here 2-3 years ago. This is why, as part of the team at Austin Family Allergy & Asthma, we invest so much time and effort in working with the schools, promoting food allergy awareness, and lobbying at the state capitol. It is very rewarding to see our efforts pay off in a big way.”
Board Certified Allergists Doctor Allen K. Lieberman and Doctor Hetu Parekh treat the WHOLE patient — and family members of ALL ages! Austin Family Allergy & Asthma can provide treatment for cedar fever, hay fever, oak allergies, asthma and food allergy issues. Same day or next day appointments are available and some Saturdays. Call 512-346-7936 to book your appointment today. Sí, Hablamos español!