I sincerely sympathize. It was not my intention to demean or place doubt on the
reality or severity of the alegic reactions you experience. My coming from a
family of alergic people, may help me understand. Any one of a number of common
food products is capable of quickly ending my mother's life and my father is
hypersensitive to all kinds of airborn things and developed asthma to boot.
I myself had a heavy case of hay fever in my teens and when 18, went into
anaphylactic shock as a result of a medication prescribed for something I didn't
even have. It's no fun - you either come very close or complete the process of
dying. MY whole body swelled up like a balloon, as the plasma filter into my
cells, once my blood ceased to circulate. Massive doses of antihistiminics and
adreniline injected directly ito my heart had no effect and things looked rather
grim. I (obviously) got through it, but my metabolism remained radically altered
for many years after.
However, looking back on it, it may well have been the best thing that ever
happened to me, aside from being conceived and born (which are also things one
doesn't control, but learn to do so - or at least mix it up a little). It forced
me to do and discover a lot of things I'm sure I wouldn't have otherwise, things
that are a (if not the) central part of who I am. What happened with my brother
may have more to do with me than with him. I didn't think much of it when I wrote
that post (and I was tired to boot), but I have walked a lot of people through a
lot of things.
I have taken pain (from migraine to gastritis to venom) away from others just by
putting my hand where it hurts (and my own lymph nodes swell, doing it). These
things aren't supposed to happen and since there's not much I can do to
intellectualize about it, many times I forget about it. (I assume everyone can do
it). Many times I can tell what caused the problem, by what I feel coming through
my hand. (I've asked questions, which is how I know - many times the people don't
know the source, I have had to ferret it out. That part of it IS more analytical,
I've talked a lot of people though a lot of scorpion bites, which FOR SURE has a
strong psychlogical component, and that you do by intentionally belittling the
experience. But you also have to put out the energy to smash the thing back into
place, to compensate. What I said about my brother is true, and the copy sent him
was meant to bring things up to date in this regard. (Got that Al? no response
yet). It also occurred to me that he might want to join sanet.
I've had three scorpian bites myself and one required intravenous anti something.
But the next time around, when I felt myself getting nauseated again, I pulled the
fucking by then dead scorpion out of the mud, washed it in the river, ate the son
of a bitch (well, it's head and forearms) and never felt a thing! Not even the
tickling in the throat that you get even when it doesn't become life threatening.
The nausea left of course. I guess there are different levels to everything. I
probably had built up some antibodies by then. But sometimes you have to get
pissed off to accomplish anything. Or forget about your boogieman - walk over
it. You have to be able to do that though. And no one else can tell you when or
I've come close to anaphlaxis at least another time or two, but I'd read up on it
by then and managed to get my blood pressure back up and circulation moving by
doing a few simple things. Now I've ceased to worry about it. I can handle it -
and a lot more.
I love getting people off steroids (they make you dependant). Make your own,
internally! (It was ACTH that got me through the shock - but I must have learned
how to do it myself, since then). Let me tell you about the wreck I was in when I
bent a steering wheel into a butterfly shape, or the time I lifted up the car that
fell on me (I was under it). (I weigh 130). Sometimes when my nose gets stuffed
up, I shut my mouth to force the nasal passages open. Temperment and control play
a role in this, no doubt. And genetics. Destiny? You have to believe in what
you do. Your belief has to have a basis in reality (even if you make part of your
own). And somethimes you have to put your life on the line for what you believe.
But I can't live your life for you (But maybe, just for a moment, I CAN - if you'll
Jane Sooby wrote:
> I was just speaking with my girlfriend last night about how unaware
> people--even medical professionals--seem to be about the severity of
> allergies to Hymenoptera.
> Let me just state that I am *not* one of these people who are always
> worrying about allergies--I am very healthy and have a positive attitude
> toward bees.
Jane, I believe you.
> When I was in 8th grade, I was stung on the foot by a honey bee. It was
> painful and I sat down--the next thing I knew I was on the ground. People
> around told me that I had jerked forward out of the chair. Ironically, this
> occurred in the backyard of an allergist, who felt that I had had an
> hysterical response to the pain of the bee sting. Other people have told me
> that this reaction is typical of an anaphylactic response.
What do they know? It's your life.
> So I went along for the next number of years believing that I'd had an
> "hysterical" reaction. The next time I got stung, at a concert, I made a
> concerted effort to remain calm--then I felt myself falling into
> unconsciousness and had to make a concerted effort to remain breathing!
> Fortunately, someone sitting nearby had a bee sting kit (consisting of an
> epinephrine shot) and gave me an injection. They ended up carrying me out on
> a stretcher and taking me to the hospital in an ambulance.
Why do you say fortunately? Did it help? Or did the effort?
What I do is not related to staying calm. You have to take control and may not
know how - but there's a lot of directed effort involved. And these are forces
directed against one (organic poisons). It takes valor, but that's not all.
Faith, confidence. You may have a real problem that never the less can be
compensated for internally - or not. Only you can do it. Or know to what degree.
I mean to point you at an option that may or may not work for you, to illuminate a
path you only you can walk, in this case. You may even be able to draw from other
people. Feel free to do so, if it's me.
> This was over 10 years ago and I haven't been stung since. Though I am very
> concerned about the decline of honey bees due to varroa mite and chemical
> use, I feel it makes things safer for me working outdoors.
Bees are our friends. And the bee thaat stings, dies.
On two separate occasions, years apart but in the same place, I was bit by a bee on
the back. (I had my shirt off and was eating Guamuchiles below a very good
guamuchil in the riverfront grove / yard of a friend). There was a boxed hive
below the tree and guamuchiles ripen during the hottest time of year - April and
May, and the bees get angry easier when the hive heats up. On both occasions I did
the same thing. I walked over to the hive, raised my foot and said out loud
(probably in Spanish, since they were Mexican bees), "Sting me again and I'll kick
your chingada hive over)". The whole hive swarmed around me like crazy but knew
damn well I meant it. No stings.
> My friend was stung by a hornet the other day. She got stung last summer,
> and this time she swelled up badly around the sting site. To me this is an
> indication of increasing sensitivity to the stings, as my bee allergy
> accelerated with each bee sting in a similar way. However, the medical
> professional she is seeing diminishes the severity of the situation, denies
> the possibility of an allergy, and made a flip remark about how a sting on
> her neck would "do her in." "Anaphylaxis" is defined in Webster's as
> "hypersensitivity (as to foreign proteins or drugs) resulting from
> sensitization following prior contact with the causative."
Sounds like they could care less! And that's a very poor description - it explains
very little. They don't even get into it. Actually, any high protein substance
is potentially nutritious, if you can assmilate that. I'm sure they put a lot of
energy into making the stuff.
> I am not surprised that your brother freaked out when he was stung if he had
> previously had experiences similar to mine, such as a total shutdown of the
> body's functions!
Anaphyaxis isn't "a total shutdown of the body's functions". The euphemistic
sounding "collapse of the peripheral circulatory system" is an accurate
physiological description. The "the peripheral circulatory system" refers to the
capillaries - they shut down - in reaction to an offending substance - so your bood
doesn't flow. The capillaries are between the veins and arteries, where all
nutrional exchange occurs between blood and the cells - the rest of the circulatory
system is just to get it there and back. The cell walls of the vessals dialate and
the plasma leaks out, into the surrounding tissues. You fell like your bones will
leave your flesh. Definately not recomended.
> Doctors warn that stings can result in death if not treated immediately. And this
> does happen every year.
They want your business - and dependancy. -But I won't tell you need it - or
don't. (And I appologize to any doctor not fitting the stereotype - but too many do
- typically arrogant, ignorant and callous bastards - the goods ones of course, are
> I suggest that your brother was stung that time by an insect to which he did not
> have an allergy, though it felt like the same thing.
It's an interactive universe. We are not going to agree - but you're invited. I
could tell you about another occasion he was well served by my advice / orientation
in relation to a potentially lethal problem - but itīs a somewhat politically
sensitive issue and he's a public servant. Let it suffice to say there was a way
of solving the problem by being self reliant.
> If anyone has further medical information on allergies to Hymenoptera and
> increasing sensitivity to stings, I would like to know about it. How
> accurate are the skin tests that allergists use to determine sensitivity?
> This is an issue I think about from time to time working in the field.
One more anecdote. Once I was visiting someone in a hospital that had been
dependant on steroids for asthma during 13 years (and it was dripping in the vein
just then), and I said I'm leaving and not coming back. Then I said - grab my
arm! What do you feel? She did so and said: Nurse - Take this IV out of my arm,
I'm checking out. And the nurse said - You can't do that. The doctor this and the
doctor that. She replied - Are you going to take it out or do you want me to do it
myself (in fact she was a nurse herself, as well as a biologist).
Six or eight months later (and 2 or three emergency but short hospitalizations) and
we'd worked out the technical details (after having convinced the internist in
charge of her ward in what is now UCSD med center of the validity of our appoach),
and she was invited to explain to the chief of staff and respiratory team, how
she'd managed to do what hadn't been done before - terminate a dependency on
steroids after so many years, for her condition, which I assume will ALWAYS require
some sort of attention or compensation (we're not in touch so I don't know for
> >Regarding severe allergies to bee stings: My brother did that - I say did
> >because I was with him once when he got stung and dropped a box of ripe
> >tomatoes he was carrying at the moment, because he thought the sting would do
> >him in. It was visably clear to me that HE was DOING it - opening up to it
> >and freaking out - and I told him so. It took a little convincing, but he was
> >able to take control and had a normal rather than abnoral reaction (which had
> >been the norm for him up til then). What I can't tell you is whether the
> >effect was permanent or not. I think I email this to him too, so he can
> >answer that. It happened *many* years ago.
> >Douglas Hinds
> Jane Sooby
> University of Nebraska-Lincoln alternative crops research technician
> Nebraska Sustainable Agriculture Society western organizer
> High Plains Ag Lab
> 3257 Rd. 109
> Sidney, NE 69162
> 308-254-2402 (FAX)
> 308-254-0725 (HOME)
-- Douglas M. Hinds, Director General Centro para el Desarrollo Comunitario y Rural A.C. (CeDeCoR) (Center for Community and Rural Development) - (non profit) Cd. Guzman, Jalisco 49000 MEXICO e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
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