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Negative results but allergic to something?! What?!!

Hi, we have a 5year old girl with suspected cough variant asthma and all round rhinitis. She is on a lot of meds, montelukast, seretide 125 (4 puffs a day), ventolin (4 puffs daily), theophlynne (caffeine tabs), nasonex (once a day), cetirizine (twice a day). TBH, I think our asthma consultant is a bit baffled with her as we all are. On average she is poorly at least once a month. She misses so much time off school, (average 1 week on, 1 week off!) we have stopped all her out of school clubs and is basically ill as soon as she goes back to school from sept. She has a cough without a wheeze. Her nose is constantly snuffly and at night, hear the post nasal drip which sounds awful + obviously makes her cough. The trouble is she has been blood tested + skin prick tested and they are all negative!

Out of desperation and many other asthma sufferers we are resulting to change to wooden flooring, allergy bedding, leather sofas even though there is no 'official' evidence this will work.

The question is, has anyone else experienced 'triggers', even though having negative results? Tbh, any advice or info would be welcome. We had a hospital visit at the weekend, + even they agreed it seemed she was on a lot of meds, and appears that the consultant is trying to cover all bases!


1 Reply

Hi Angela,

I'm not a parent but I wanted to reply because your daughter sounds a lot like me! I'm in my 20s, also mainly cough variant and don't tend to wheeze, and was diagnosed at 7 (so just a bit older than your daughter) after coughing a lot at night. I was a bit more typical then (and on a lot less medication plus no hayfever) but now also seem to baffle consultants etc ugh. Like your daughter, I have allergy symptoms and am on allergy medication (montelukast though this was intended more for the asthma side), fexofenadine, Flixonase drops (really work well for me, better than the Avamys spray I used to have) and eye drops plus a whole load of asthma meds. My asthma consultant seems to accept that there is some allergy there based on symptoms and I'm definitely worse (stuffy nose, watery eyes etc) without the medication but everything seems to come up negative which is very frustrating as obviously it would be good to know what is setting it off! I am fairly sure that tree pollen is one of my triggers based on how I react around some trees but that came back negative!!

Have you thought about asking for a referral to an allergy clinic specifically, in addition to your daughter seeing the asthma consultant? My consultant put some tests on my form which I was told while having the tests could only be done under the allergy clinic not the chest clinic (chest can only do aeroallergens) and although my tests came back negative, the nurse doing them seemed to think it might be an idea to ask for a referral to the allergy clinic so they could look into that specifically. My asthma is not well controlled at all at the moment so I'm wondering if getting the allergies sorted could help; it's not necessarily happening but I have mentioned it to my GP (nurse at clinic said quicker than waiting for cons) and she is going to discuss things with cons. Not sure how it works with paediatrics but might be worth looking into more specialist allergy testing?

I hope this helps - it is really frustrating when there are symptoms but nothing to pin it down to as it makes it all a lot harder. I hope you get something sorted out soon and your daughter feels better.


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