Beesource Beekeeping Forums banner
1 - 20 of 20 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
37 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Is there any other bee-keepers out there that have bee sting allergies? (anaphylactic - swelling of eyes,ears,mouth, all over hives, breathing) I really hate to give it up. I would like to hear from you!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,228 Posts
Yup... Became allergic about 3 yrs ago. In the short term I made arrangements with another beek to tend my hives. Longer term, I met with an allergist, got tested and went through the series of desensitizing shots. That took 2 yrs and I just completed it.
I can now tolerate ONE sting. As a matter of fact, in about an hour I get another shot. This is a lifetime thing with the shots.

But the bottom line is that I am allergic and at some risk. I always carry a bottle of liquid benedryl and an epipen when working on the hives. If I get stung I go for the max dose of benedryl within the first minute. This is followed with either Claritin or Zyrtec antihistime within 2 hrs ( they are 24hr pills ). Have never had to use the epipen.

An allergist will tell you that that the allergic reaction is really a histimine response to the venom. That is the reason that antihistimines are used. And the allergist insists that I take the antihistimines BEFORE getting an allergy shot -- Even now, for safety.

Fuzzy
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
37 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'll have to look into all of that. I just got the one sting last night. 10 mintues later, hives everywhere, swelled eyes, ears, lips, I knew what was happening, made a dash to the hospital got the whole epi, iv benadryl, cortisone, and a 4 hour stay! I had my suit on but got one through it. May have to wear jeans underneath. I now have an epi pen too. Told me if it happened again take the epi and call the ambulance. Have you bee stung since your "big one" or since having the allergy shots? fortunately my husband has been helping me lots and I feel confident that he can handle the bees for a while.

thanks Fuzzy,for all the input, I'm glad to know I don't have to give this awesome hobby up, I just have to be much more careful

Krista
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,228 Posts
Hapinen,

I was stung when I was at about 50% of a full sting in the therapy. I still got some swelling but nothing like I used to. I have not been stung by a bee since last Nov.

However, understand that the therapy is now giving me a full beesting (real bee venom) every 14 days. So effectively I am being stung every two weeks.

Now, when I am going to work all the hives at one time, I will take a Claritin or Zyrtec a couple of hours before I start. That is called insurance. You will probably never have a severe reaction if you always load up on the antihistime ahead of time.... Note that is probably NOT positively !

Fuzzy
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
850 Posts
I have come to the conclusion that beekeepers should get stung ever so often just to avoid developing that allergy to honeybee venom. If you do it on purpose, you can prepare for it to minimize pain/discomfort. Do what the people do that practice BVT (apitherapy)....
I have not seen nor read Pat's book, but this just seems like really irresponsible advice to someone who has had an anaphalaxtic reaction to a bee sting. I had large local reactions - nowhere near as serious, but a huge pain ... literally. I am in the middle of 2 years of shots as well- just once every 6 weeks now and they have helped tremendously. I can take a few stings now with no real problem although every once in a while one really gets me- not sure why. In my case, I agree it is good to get stung in the beeyard on a regular basis, but for the original poster? Not sure it is, I think he is doing the right approach which is a controlled measured stinging prototcol (at the allergist).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,692 Posts
Winevines,,,you sir,,,,,,,,,,,are absolutely correct,,it is irresponsible to tell anyone to go get stung when there is any doubt that there is an unknown allergy question.
Bee Bliss,,,I'm sorry,, for you to compare allergy shots to a flu shot tells me you might not have the understanding you think you do. Am I a Dr. ,,,,No....I have been associated with sting allergies since I was 13,,,,,I'm 57 now. these BVT people,,,,what is their education,,,I didn't see DR. in front of their names. This is potentially a life and death scenario for some. People can make their own decision about allergy and sting therapy:no: NO NO NO NO NO People on this forum are looking for advice and direction. Potentially, they think you or anyone else may have the answers. Chime up,,telle'm to go get stung. There isn't an icon to display.
Might see you in the tailgaters!!!!

Rick SoMd
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,214 Posts
In his book, Mr. Charles Mraz mentions Dr. Beck and Dr. Broadman as medical doctors who did BVT on patients. He worked closely with them. There are others.

Maybe it was simplistic to compare flu shots to desensitization, but I was trying to convey that the body's immune system works faster than it is given credit for.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,692 Posts
There you go,,,the immune system and the allergy systems are way different. You are correct,,,your analogy is too simplistic,,and that is why it is irresponsible. IMO

Rick SoMd
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,228 Posts
Sorry, but Bee Bliss' advice is as responsible as giving a loaded pistol to a 5 year old and telling them that it might hurt them.

And in my opinion, it should be removed from this thread as dangerous.

Fuzzy
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
51 Posts
Whoever said that beestings will prevent allergies is wrong. My Dad was a beekeeper for many years and was frequently stung, until one day he was stung and passed out in the bee yard. After a trip to the hospital, he was stung a week later and the same thing happened again, only worse. Dr. told him is beekeeping days were over and they have been.
I am allergic to stings at level 3 out of 6. I prep with antihistamines before going to the beeyards. Then very meticulous with my beesuit <only been stung once this year>, Also have and epi pen and prednisone on hand to take if I do get stung. Its not something to play with, it can and will kill you.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
12,000 Posts
The fact is, anyone can have a severe allergic reaction to a bee sting, with or without having prior reactions. I experienced this with my son. A reaction that required hospitalization. We were given Epi-pens and kept them on hand for several years. We were told by the doctors that the next time he got stung the reaction would tend to be worse. For two years we worried about this next episode. It finally happened, one of my honeybees stung him, and the most that happened was a pimple size bump. I no longer keep the Epi-pens, but it showed me that there can be no rhythm or reason to the timing when someone reacts severely to a sting. Just because you've never had one and you've been stung many times doesn't mean you are safe from ever having a severe reaction. And vise versa.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
850 Posts
I have removed most of my above posts. Sorry to have caused a problem.
Bee Bliss- I think you are getting lots of feedback from a bunch of folks, myself included, who either have a systemic reaction or have had a serious reaction and that is why our hairs were way raised with your suggestion that at first sounded like we should all get stung to prevent allergic reactions. You later editted your suggestions that this should only be after you know that you do not have a serious reaction or allergy which I think was smart and makes much more sense.

I was once driven to delete all of my posts on this fourm and I know how that feels... I am sorry if you felt attacked. You and everyone else on this forum are entitled to their opinion, and in my IMHO I just think that when it comes to recommending stings or going gloveless, veil-less and all that, more often than not, the folks recommending these things on this forum have not had either a systemic reaction or a serious reaction and just don't see it in the same way some of us who have had those experiences do. There is also quite a big difference between commerical beeks who are getting stung on a daily basis than backyard beeks who will get much more intermittent stings. The backyard beeks are not getting this exposure in a regular measured way and therefore (IMHO) are more likely to have a bad reaction out of the blue.

I am so thankful that my allergy protocol has helped me, but it will be a cold day in- well you know where before I go to the bee yard without protective gear (PPG). i get stung plenty right through the PPG and am tolerating those stings much better since the desensitizing.
 
1 - 20 of 20 Posts
Top