Fifteen-year-old Diallo Robbins-Brinson of Macon, Georgia, died after an allergic reaction at a Golden Corral restaurant in McDonough, Georgia. Diallo was having dinner with his soccer team and grabbed two of his favorite cookie for dessert: white chocolate with Macadamia nuts.
Within minutes of eating the cookies, Diallo was sweaty, had swollen eyes and was on the floor unconscious. Someone else in the restaurant offered their Epi-Pen Jr., and it was administered to Diallo, but the dosage was not enough to reverse the anaphylaxis. He was transported to the hospital, but never responded or regained consciousness. He died two days later.
Diallo’s mother said he had been allergic to peanuts his entire life and avoided them, but that he had eaten white chocolate Macadamia nut cookies many times and never had a reaction. He so accustomed to diligently avoiding peanuts, that he no longer carried an Epi-Pen.
This story is so upsetting in many ways. My heart goes out to the family of Diallo. To read of the lightning speed with which anaphylactic shock can stop a promising young life is absolutely devastating.
It’s unclear whether the anaphylaxis was triggered because he had unknowingly developed a tree nut allergy, or if there was actually a peanut hiding in the cookie he ate.
This points to so many things to be concerned about in my own life with my nut-allergic daughter. She was originally only allergic to tree nuts, and could actually eat spoonfuls of peanut butter with no concern. But about two years ago, her skin test revealed a reaction to peanuts as well. The reaction was not as severe as that to tree nuts, but it had emerged nonetheless, which was very disappointing. I guess this story shows that if you have a food allergy, you should have skin tests regularly throughout your life? I don’t know, but the prospect of walking around without the knowledge that a food is potentially lethally to you is very disturbing.
This also makes me think about the times we have eaten at this restaurant. It is, in fact, one of my nut-allergic daughter’s favorite places to go. (Though it is my least favorite!) When we have gone, we always scrutinize the buffet, and her dessert options are always limited to the soft serve that comes out of the ice cream machine. But even with those precautions, it often still feels like a minefield with the inevitable pecan pie and other mystery food items presenting life-threatening risks.
I’m thinking we should never go to that restaurant again. What do you think?
Do you have a tree nut allergy or a peanut allergy or both?
Source: Atlanta Journal Constitution
Teen dies after apparent allergic reaction to nuts
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