Oral Immunotherapy Success Stories
Dr. Chacko Featured on the Cover of Atlanta’s Top Doctor Magazine
Danielle’s daughter Cheryl had reactions to different foods as early as 10 months old. First, Cheryl couldn’t keep down the scrambled eggs her mom made for her one morning. At 1 year, she tried peanut butter crackers and immediately hives began spreading all over her thighs. Mom called CHOA and was advised to give Benadryl. Danielle hung the phone up and turned around to see her daughter turning blue. She called 911 and began praying and screaming. Cheryl was in anaphylactic shock. She was treated by an awesome medical team and this family spent the next 12 years avoiding soy, wheat, dairy, eggs, peanuts, and seafood- all things Cheryl tested positive for. For 12 YEARS Danielle has made special allergy free treats for Cheryl’s Birthdays. Cheryl attends a 7 day away camp and mom packs every bit of food for her daughter.
Two years ago they were at Main Event and Cheryl had not touched her food (the allergy free food her mom packed) and she told her mom she didn’t want to eat “that special food.” She didn’t want to do that anymore. After that day, Cheryl began avoiding social situations with food.
Danielle heard about Dr. Chacko from Facebook and at age 13 now, Cheryl is beginning OIT with milk. Danielle said, “I didn’t want my daughter to feel different anymore.”
We are extremely excited that Cheryl is beginning OIT, let’s all wish her a fantastic journey!
It is not uncommon for us to see families with multiple children taking part in OIT. Is it work for our families? Of course! The alternative though, is avoidance which comes with a high burden of constant worry.
Kristen originally brought her daughter Cecelia in for OIT. During her appointment she gave Patrick a cashew and he had an allergic reaction. After further testing, she enrolled him in OIT too! Both of these super cute kiddos are doing great, and we are so thankful Kristen chose Chacko Allergy to treat her children’s food allergies.
Joshua experienced a terrifying allergic reaction at the age of 2. His Dad was eating cashews and let him taste one, immediately Joshua began choking, his face turned bright red and began swelling. Athena heard her husband screaming in complete panic and she ran downstairs to see what happened. She immediately called 911 and the operator advised the family to head straight to Gwinnett Medical Center and bypass waiting on the ambulance. A police escort was waiting for them on the highway.
Joshua spent the weekend in the hospital. The next week the family followed up with an allergist in Buckhead where he tested high for peanuts and tree nuts. The following nine years Joshua avoided nuts at all costs.
Last month Athena found out her neighbors daughter graduated OIT with Dr. Chacko and she immediately made the call and scheduled Joshua’s first appointment. Today is his third appointment and although he admits he is “a little scared” he’s also very excited. Athena, with tears in her eyes said, “I am trusting my faith that everything is going to be ok.”
We are excited to take this journey with you both, Athena and Joshua. Thank you for trusting us, with your most precious gift, your child.
Sohum had eczema from birth and one night his Grandmother bathed him in yogurt and chickpea flour. A little of the yogurt went into his eye and it swelled up so much his parents said that they thought his eye was going to “pour out of the socket.” They rushed him to the ER and he was given benadryl. A few months later the family drove to New York for a wedding and Sohum’s mom was feeding him with formula due to the long car ride and he broke out in tiny bumps all over his body. When they returned home the pediatrician did a blood test and Sohum was allergic to milk, eggs, and nuts. Dr. Chacko was recommended by Sohums’ allergist. In March 2016 he started OIT for milk, He’s since graduated and one of his favorite foods to eat is pizza. In fact, he eats pizza almost every Friday and even has a shirt that says “Pizza is the Love of My Life.” This a happy kid that is now able to enjoy ice cream and chocolate! Today is his 1st day of egg OIT!!! We wish you the best Sohum and will enjoy watching you blaze through OIT.
At the age of 2, Ayaan tried his first piece of butter chicken and he became sick. Again at age 4 and 1/2 he was at a friends’ house and tried this same dish again. He was to the point of throwing up fresh blood when his parents took him to the pediatrician. He referred them to an allergist. The allergist said Ayaan was allergic to tree nuts so they began avoiding them. Shweta, Ayaan’s mom was doing her own research on Facebook and saw a story on one of Dr. Chacko’s patients. She made an appointment the following week. Today Ayaan completed his 1st day of OIT treatment!!! We are so excited to follow Ayaan on his journey. He is a self proclaimed foodie and we can’t wait to let him unleash his love for food upon completion of OIT!
Yvonne knew something was terribly wrong when her daughter Mable, 15 months old at the time, ate some peanut butter and her face began to swell. She became agitated and threw up. Yvonne immediately took her to the pediatrician where Mable was treated for an allergic reaction. The allergist at CHOA performed a skin test and the family avoided peanuts entirely until they met Dr. Chacko. Mable began OIT in January and we are happy to say she is doing G-R-E-A-T!!!
There is no holding back our smiles when we see these two coming!!!
Madeline had a terrible cold that turned into bronchitis. She ended up in the hospital and when she was released her pulmonologist referred her to Dr. Chacko. She was diagnosed with asthma and after her first treatment she says, “the medicine has been an unbelievable success, a complete turnaround.” Madeline we couldn’t be happier with your results! Thank you for choosing Chacko Allergy.
Today is a BIG day for this handsome little guy. His 1st day of OIT!!! Kingston’s parents found out he was allergic to wheat at 6 months old. Mom gave him a bite of a biscuit and he reacted immediately. They rushed to the hospital where the physician treated him. A physician at CHOA referred this awesome family to Dr. Chacko and we are so glad they are here! Nurse Amanda pictured teaching the family how to weigh out dosing and what to look for in wheat products to dose with. And of course, our super brave patient excited about his OIT adventure.
Dear Dr. Chacko,
We cannot thank you enough for everything you have done for our family, especially Sullivan. From the moment we met you last July we knew we wanted to pursue OIT with you. I will never forget how optimistic and reassuring you were when discussing treatment. It had always been unimaginable to me that my son, who’s peanut score was greater than 100, would be eating 5 grams of peanuts within the year. I will always remember when you said, “It will not only be life changing for Sullivan, but for you too.” For years I have prayed for a treatment/cure and worried as he approached kindergarten about him being isolated or bullied or accidentally ingesting peanuts or tree nuts, but because of you and OIT his life has changed. OIT truly is life changing and miraculous. We are forever grateful for you and that Sullivan can live without fear of accidental ingestion. You are such a kind, patient and amazing doctor who will always have a special place in our hearts!
Elizabeth & Sullivan Foley
Madison’s introduction to food allergies is a story we hear often. As a toddler, she stuck her finger in a peanut butter jar and reacted immediately. Her family rushed her to the hospital where they administered an epipen. From that day forward, as a family they all avoided peanuts. Madison’s teachers were informed and the hope was that everyone was vigilant and careful. Recently Madison’s mom decided enough is enough and that she couldn’t take a gamble on her daughters safety by relying on others to do their part. Today is their second visit to see Dr. Chacko, they are excited about OIT and the quality of life and piece of mind it will allow all of them to have. Three generations of beautiful women, all smiles!
Rohan began his battle with allergies early in life. He would experience terrible eczema when breastfeeding, so his family began an elimination diet. For 6 or 7 years, avoidance and yearly allergy testing was the answer for this family. No milk, no eggs, and no nuts. For Birthday parties his parents would pack Rohan some applesauce and a brownie so that he could at least feel as if he was taking part in the traditional cake fesitivities. Once Rohan’s family found Dr. Chacko, he blazed through the egg challenge and milk challenge. He has conquered peanut OIT and now he’s onto the rest of the tree nuts. This 10 year old boy is loving life, and his dad says, even put on a little weight with all the new foods he can enjoy! Way to go Rohan, we couldn’t be more proud.
Lakhbir had the terrifying experience of rushing her four-year-old son, Ronil to the hospital after he ate a Snickers bar which caused an anaphylactic reaction. From that day forward, the family carried multiple EpiPens. They avoided peanuts and read the fine print on everything. This caused years of angst for the entire family until they heard news of a classmate taking part in OIT with Dr. Chacko. Within weeks, they too, found themselves beginning their own OIT journey with Dr. Chacko. Ronil is eating up to five peanuts a day now. Lakhbir tells us that life is just easier, Birthday parties are easier, and Ronil is allowed to go on playdates (which he never was before). So what’s next for Ronil? OIT with cashews, so that he and his family can one day enjoy delicious traditional Indian food.
Sofie had an allergic reaction to peanuts as a small child. Her mom, Katalin, diligently took Sofie to the allergist every year for testing. Year after year, the same diagnosis and the same outcome, which also meant the same TOTAL AVOIDANCE of peanuts. In 2018, life changed for this family. Sofie began OIT with Dr. Chacko and she is now eating 7 peanut m&ms a day!
If you don’t have a child with food allergies let me explain what this means. This family can eat at restaurants without the fear and anxiety of cross-contamination, Katalin doesn’t have to worry every day when her child goes to school that she may accidentally come in contact with peanuts and get that dreaded call, and Sofie has the freedom to be a kid and live without the nagging chore of reading every ingredient in her food. This is what OIT success looks like.
Thank you, Katalin and Sofie, for allowing us to be a part of your journey!
Amanda Thompson is no stranger to allergies. She has struggled with them most of her life, so when her daughter had an anaphylactic reaction at age two, Amanda began the search for an allergist. Her first meeting was with an allergist that told her to avoid peanuts at all costs. Amanda knew that would only contribute to the social isolation and stigma for her daughter. She continued her search and found Dr. Chacko. They are beginning the journey through OIT and we will keep you posted on their success!
Jake’s mom found out very early on, he was allergic to milk, as he had a lot of gastrointestinal issues. She quit eating or drinking anything containing milk while she was breastfeeding. A few years later Jake was tested and those showed he was mildly allergic. Until one day, he took a bite of a piece of regular cheese, and he had an anaphylactic response. This meant total avoidance of many foods for the entire family. Jake’s mom stumbled onto OIT through Facebook and found Dr. Chacko. Through the journey of OIT Jake just had an entire 8 ounces of milk at our office! We are thrilled for Jake and his very supportive and loving family. Milk and cookies for everyone!
There is an excitement you can feel when the clocks spring forward. If you have children that means weekends on the baseball field, grilling on the patio, and getting ready for Spring Break. I passed Bruster’s Ice Cream today, and it was the first time I have seen a line that long since last summer. Immediately I thought of James. He’s one of our OIT patients. Although we may disagree on NFL football (He’s a Packers fan) we both love ice cream. When James was 15 months old his mom gave him a tiny bit of peanut butter, causing his lips to swell. After a visit to an allergist and eventually allergy testing, the answer was just to avoid peanuts. James is now 9. He started OIT when he was 7 at our office. At one point, he was eating entire peanut butter sandwiches but he doesn’t love the taste so we settled on a few peanut m&m candies each day. Parents of children with food allergies view the world through a different lense. They almost have to in order to keep them safe. When James’ parents would take him for ice-cream they saw another risk, an ice cream scooper with possible cross contamination from the reese’s peanut butter cups, rocky road ice-cream or peanut butter and chocolate. Last week in our office I asked Jake how OIT has changed his life and without any hesitation he replied, “My dad doesn’t freak out anymore when we go out for ice-cream.” Although we all had a good laugh over his answer, we also know just how serious piece of mind is for his parents.
There are so many ways in which a child with food allergies can feel ostracized. Treats at school for good behavior, sleepovers at a friends house, and birthday cakes are only a few things that these children aren’t able to enjoy or take part in because of the allergy itself or the fear surrounding it. Erika decided it was time to tackle that fear head on. Her daughter, Annabel began OIT with Dr. Chacko in June of 2018. Annabel is now consuming eggs, milk, and peanuts. FOOD is no longer surrounded by FEAR for this family. Erika said this has opened up her daughter’s world entirely. Annabel was able to take part in her very first sleepover this year, and we couldn’t be any happier!
“My daughter had her first reaction to nuts when she was 3. My mother in law gave her a walnut. Her lips were so swollen and her face turned bright red. My husband and I rushed home, called 911, and were sent to the nearest fire station where they administered an EpiPen. I knew I never wanted to risk that again with my child. It was terrifying.” – Eliza (protected name)
Under the care of Dr. Chacko with OIT, this little girl is now eating two peanuts a day. Her mother said this experience has been life-changing.
Fear is one of the most common words used to describe living with nut allergies before OIT. One by one we are helping these families stomp out that fear!
This is a 12 year old boy living life to the fullest. He plays football, baseball, basketball, lacrosse and not to mention an avid swimmer. This is also a boy who is highly allergic to all types of grass, trees, cats and dogs. Chase is able to conquer his allergies and has decreased his asthma medications since being treated by Dr. Chacko. His mom, Kris Charles, says this kind of control has been a lifesaver. This is what it’s all about, giving kids the freedom to be kids. To run and play and enjoy the outdoors. Go get ’em Chase!
OIT Success! Rebecca Thurman brought her son, Theodore into see Dr. Chacko beginning in July 2018. Theodore had been allergic to milk since infancy. As hard as Rebecca tried to limit his contact with milk products she found it virtually impossible to maintain this 100%. Theodore had numerous epinephrine episodes and Rebecca decided it was time to take action. Theodore now enjoys a cup of milk everyday! So what’s next for this sweet boy? OIT with eggs. Bring it on!
Congratulations to this Double OIT Grad!!! This is his second round of OIT with us and he has successfully completed tree nuts and peanuts. This has been an incredible family to work with! Thank you for allowing us to share your story, we are very proud of you.
We are so happy to share in the success of our newest Milk OIT graduate, Theo!!! Please share in congratulating him as he has conquered a great fear on this journey to have some peace of mind with his milk allergy.
Another great OIT success story, shared with parent permission! He is showing off his daily maintenance dose. After about a year of commitment he now lives a life free from the fear of reaction from accidental exposure. His daily “medication” is a mixture of peanuts
and multiple different treatments (almost like a nut snack pack). #OITWORKS
Dr. Chacko was able to build up this boy’s immune system, so he is able to be around peanuts now! OIT works!
Dr. Chacko helped this boy eat his first peanut! OIT works!
My son graduated milk OIT in December 2016. He was a patient of Dr. Chacko. Even after more than a year, I still can’t believe he can go out and eat icecream like a regular kid. Still seems like a dream.
Awesome day in the life of this 4 year old and our family. He ate a small handful of peanuts which would have sent him to the hospital or worse less than a short year ago. OIT (oral immunotherapy) for the win! Thanks Dr. Chacko…we can breathe a little easier now.