The red meat allergy

A bug can turn you into a vegetarian, or at least make you swear off red meat. Doctors across the nation are seeing a surge of sudden meat allergies in people bitten by a certain kind of tick.

This bizarre problem was only discovered a few years ago but is growing as the ticks spread from the Southwest and the East to more parts of the United States. In some cases, adjustable desk eating a burger or a steak has landed people in the hospital with severe allergic reactions.

Few patients seem aware of the risk, and even doctors are slow to recognize it. As one allergist who has seen 200 cases on New York's Long Island said, "Why would someone think they're allergic to meat when they've been eating it their whole life?"

The culprit is the Lone Star tick, named for Texas, a state famous for meaty barbecues. The tick is now found throughout the South and the eastern half of the United States.

Tick meat allergy: This undated photo provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows a Lone Star tick.AP Photo: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, James Gathany
This undated photo provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows a Lone Star tick electrical desk.
Researchers think some other types of ticks also might cause meat allergies; cases have been reported in Australia, France, Germany, Sweden, Spain, Japan and Korea.

Here's how it happens: The bugs harbor a sugar that humans don't have, called alpha-gal. The sugar is also is found in red meat — beef, pork, venison, rabbit — and even some dairy products. It's usually fine when people encounter it through food that gets digested.

But a tick bite triggers an immune system response, and in that high-alert state, the body perceives the sugar the tick transmitted to the victim's bloodstream and skin as a foreign substance, and makes antibodies to it. That sets the stage for an allergic reaction the next time the person eats red meat and encounters the sugar.

It happened last summer to Louise Danzig, a 63-year-old retired nurse from Montauk on eastern Long Island.

Hours after eating a burger, "I woke up with very swollen hands that were on fire with itching," she said. As she headed downstairs, "I could feel my lips and tongue were getting swollen," and by the time she made a phone call for help, "I was losing my ability to speak and my airway was closing."

She had had recent tick bites, and a blood test confirmed the meat allergy.

"I'll never have another hamburger, I'm sure," Danzig said. "I definitely do not want to have that happen to me again."

In Mount Juliet near Nashville, Tennessee, 71-year-old Georgette Simmons went to a steakhouse on June 1 for a friend's birthday and had a steak.

"About 4:30 in the morning I woke up and my body was on fire. I was itching all over and I broke out in hives. Nothing like that had ever happened to me before," she said.

A few weeks later, for a brother's birthday, she ordered another steak. Hours later she woke "almost hysterical" with a constricted throat in addition to hives and a burning sensation. She, too, recalled tick bites.

Dr. Robert Valet at Vanderbilt University said Simmons was one of two patients he diagnosed with the meat allergy that day. He warned her it could be worse next time.

"I never did eat a lot of red meat anyway but when I go out I like a nice fillet. Right now I wouldn't even eat hamburger meat," Simmons said.

At the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, "I see two to three new cases every week," said Dr. Scott Commins, who with a colleague, Dr. Thomas Platts-Mills, published the first paper tying the tick to the illness in 2011.

One of the first cases they saw was a bow hunter who had eaten meat all his life but landed in the emergency department several times with allergic reactions after eating meat. More cases kept turning up in people who were outdoors a lot.

"It seemed something geographical. We thought at first it might be a squirrel parasite," Commins said. "It took us a while to sort of put everything together" and finger the tick, he said.

Dr. Erin McGintee, an allergy specialist on eastern Long Island, an area with many ticks, has seen nearly 200 cases over the last three years. At least 30 involved children, and the youngest was 4 or 5. She is keeping a database to study the illness with other researchers.

"It is bizarre," she said. "It goes against almost anything I've ever learned as an allergist," because the symptoms can occur as long as eight hours after eating meat adjustable desk, rather than immediately, and the culprit is a sugar — a type of carbohydrate — whereas most food allergies are caused by proteins, she said.

Allergic reactions can be treated with antihistamines to ease itching, and more severe ones with epinephrine. Some people with the allergy now carry epinephrine shots in case they are stricken again.

Doctors don't know if the allergy is permanent. Some patients show signs of declining antibodies over time, although those with severe reactions are understandably reluctant to risk eating meat again. Even poultry products such as turkey sausage sometimes contain meat byproducts and can trigger the allergy.

"We don't really know yet how durable this will be" or whether it's lifelong, like a shellfish allergy, Valet said.

The meat allergy "does not seem to be lifelong, but the caveat is, additional tick bites bring it back," Commins said.

Michael Abley, who is 74 and lives in Surry, Virginia, near Williamsburg, comes from a family of cattle ranchers and grew up eating meat. He developed the meat allergy more than a decade ago, although it was only tied to the tick in more recent years.

"Normally I can eat a little bit of dairy," he said, but some ice cream landed him in an emergency room about a month ago. He admitted having had recent bug bites.

"I'm surrounded by ticks here," he said.

Shot American Arizona Church

A LATE NIGHT attack on a Catholic church has left one priest dead and another seriously injured.

An alarm was raised at Mother of Mercy Missions in Phoenix on Tuesday night following an intrusion.

Fr Kenneth Walker, 28, and Fr Joseph Terra, who had been living at the church for the past four years, nu skin hk were both in the church at the time.

Fr Walker received gunshot wounds which were too severe and he died at the scene. Fr Terra made the 911 call and when emergency services arrived, they noted that he had sustained serious injuries, but had not been stabbed or shot nuskin hk.

He was taken to hospital where he remains in a serious condition.

Speaking at a press conference as police searched for a suspect, Fr Fred Adamson from the Diocese of Phoenix paid tribute to the men: ”Fr Terra is a pretty strong man and he’s not afraid of anybody. But if somebody came to ask for something, he would give the shirt of his back. That is the kind of priest he was. A real servant of God.

He also confirmed that Fr Terra was able to absolve Fr Walker and to offer the last rites.

“Obviously, a great deal of comfort and consolation to us Cellmax, as Catholics, that he was able to extend that in his own suffering,” he concluded.

The local community is in shock at the crime.

“They are fantastic priests, and I can’t believe they were shot,” said parishioner Ted Brudnicki. “For what reason hair transplant, I can’t understand. It is just amazing that people would do this kind of thing…especially to dedicated people.”

Mayor Greg Stanton said the shooting “strikes at our core because every American should feel safe in a house of worship”.

“And that basic value was violated in an unspeakable way.”

He added that many questions remain but insisted that police were working to catch the shooter.

Want to change the law

An Army veteran who says his pet ducks help relieve his post-traumatic stress disorder is now hoping for a change in the Ohio village law that prohibits him from keeping the animals in his backyard flower arrangement.

Darin Welker, who served in the Army National Guard, was cited for violating a ban on keeping farm animals in West Lafayette, about 80 miles east of Columbus. He and his attorney said Wednesday that village officials are considering the possibility of a new law.

"The village is in agreement and willing to negotiate a new village ordinance for animal therapy," Welker's attorney, Robert Weir, said.

Village Council Member Ron Lusk would only say that the council and mayor are trying to work out a solution to the problem and that will include taking a look at the ordinance to see if any changes are needed hair transplant.

Lusk said he couldn't comment further because the case is still in court. But he did add that he and other village administration officials are military veterans and wouldn't do anything to slight other veterans.

Welker says his back was injured in the service and his 14 ducks provide physical and emotional therapy. He says they ease his depression.

A Coshocton Municipal Court hearing scheduled Wednesday on Welker's citation was continued for 60 days, alexander hera wedding and Weir said he hopes something can be worked out by then.

Welker had wanted to have his day in court, even after a Pennsylvania stranger paid his $140 fine and court costs. He said he now hopes for a new ordinance that would let him keep his ducks.

"I think this shows that it's important to stand up and fight for what's right nu skin hk," Welker said.

USA poll

Two years into President Barack Obama's second term, more voters say they are dissatisfied with his administration's handling of everything from the economy to foreign policy, giving him the worst marks of any modern U.S. president, a poll on Wednesday said The Best Beauty Center.

In a survey of 1,446 registered voters, 33 percent said Obama was the worst president since World War Two, while 28 percent pointed to his predecessor, George W. Bush, as the worst, the poll by Quinnipiac University found nu skin hk.

Voters were split over which of the two most recent presidents has done a better job with 39 percent saying Obama has been a better president than Bush and, 40 percent saying Obama is worse.

Most voters said Ronald Reagan, who served two terms in the 1980s, was the best president since 1945, the survey showed.

"Over the span of 69 years of American history and 12 presidencies, President Barack Obama finds himself with President George W. Bush at the bottom of the popularity barrel nu skin hk," said Tim Malloy, assistant director of Quinnipiac University's polling unit.

While Obama's job approval rating has inched higher to 40 percent, up from 38 percent in December, more voters gave him largely negative marks in key areas: the economy, foreign policy, healthcare and terrorism, according to the poll nuskin hk.

On the environment, 50 percent gave Obama positive marks.

The telephone survey, taken June 24 to June 30, had a margin of error of plus or minus 2.6 percentage points.

UCD boarders

UCD AND ITS students are to sit down and negotiate reasonable accommodation rules this summer, hoping to resolve a number of issues that were raised during a campaign last year.

According to the UCD Students’ Union (UCDSU), senior staff at the college have agreed to renegotiate the License to Reside before the start of the next academic year.

“This willingness to negotiate on UCD’s behalf is an encouraging sign that they want students input on how UCD moves forward nuskin hk,” UCDSU said in a statement this evening.

The group had launched a campaign last year to outline allegations that students’ rights were being infringed on campus.

Live-in students must sign the Licence to Reside agreement before moving into Belfield. The situation has been exacerbated by a shortage of suitable student accommodation in Dublin city nuskin hk.

The SU claim that those who live on campus are not treated with the same respect as they would be entitled to if they were living in private residences.

They complained about the fines that are handed out to students for various misdemeanours, explaining that they are “much higher than any other university in Ireland”.

According to the students, the charges are “extortionately high” and UCD Residence retained €105,000 during the 2011-2012 academic year.

They also had problems with the appeals process as it is carried out by the same people who first administer penalties.

The use of cameras within the buildings was another issue raised, nuskin hk with students claiming it violated their privacy.

Speaking tonight, nuskin hk president Feargal Hynes said he is looking forward to “getting down to business with UCD authorities and making sure that students who do live on campus get the respect they deserve”.


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