Dr. Dinger: Peanut Desensitization Treatment Puts Stone Oak On Map; Welcome Home Community Newspaper; 2015

Peanut Desensitization Treatment Puts Stone Oak On Map
November 4, 2015, Welcome Home

Sometimes we make a new friend in places or among circumstances where we least expect. That couldn’t be truer for two San Antonio boys, who have become best buds fighting a common enemy – One that likes to hide and whose scent alone leaves their moms in fear.

This enemy is peanut.

For the non-allergic, it is sometimes hard to understand how this little, often-invisible food, can control where someone plays, eats, or even whether they can go on a family trip. But for allergic kids like 8-year-old Kaden Moths and Alex Kingdon, the danger is real. Alex tested positive to peanut at ten months old. Another test showed he is highly likely to suffer an anaphylactic reaction to it.

“People are so afraid when they hear your child has a peanut allergy – he’s been excluded from everyday kid things, like birthday parties,” Alex’s mom, Stacey Kingdon says.

That could soon change for Alex and Kaden, thanks to an up-and-coming desensitization treatment with Board Certified Allergist, Dr. Patricia Gomez Dinger of Advanced Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology, located in Stone Oak.

Together, under Dr. Gomez Dinger’s care, Alex and Kaden are undergoing Peanut Oral Immunotherapy, or what’s more commonly referred to as POIT. Dr. Gomez Dinger is the first physician in South Texas, one of only fifty Allergists in the United States, to conduct Peanut Desensitization.

The moms, having never met, both approached Dr. Gomez Dinger about POIT several years ago. After researching the POIT protocol for over two years and weighing the risk, Dr. Gomez Dinger decided to move forward with the treatment, in late August.

“Knowing the treatment would require the boys, both eight years old, to spend a lot of time in my office for the next twenty-or-so weeks, it just made sense to conduct the POIT treatment together,” says Dr. Dinger.

As strange as it sounds, POIT works by giving Alex and Kaden doses of peanut, the same thing that could send them into a dangerous reaction. Dr. Dinger started the boys on just a trace of peanut mixed with Kool-Aid. This month, the boys will reach what Dr. Dinger calls the peanut challenge, where the boys will eat 12 whole peanuts, twice in one day. If they show no signs of reaction, they “graduate” from POIT. POIT graduates must eat a dose of peanut, daily, for the next several years.

POIT is not yet FDA approved. It has an 85-percent success rate.

As for the boys, Kaden and Alex have developed a pretty tight friendship bonding over how fast they can each take their POIT treatment and playing video games. Kaden says he cannot wait until the day he is able to eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich for the first time. Alex dreams about going to birthday parties and sleepovers – maybe even, he says, with Kaden by his side.

Soon, as San Antonio’s first POIT graduates, Kaden and Alex will be able to take their newfound friendship anywhere, and do almost anything (where there might be peanut), and not be afraid.

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