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Hello everyone. I’m posting this on behalf of my girlfriend who is having an issue related to allergy whenever she is around me or my house. I know this is a bit of a wall of text but please keep reading, we can use all the help we can get at this point. Also I’m posting this with her consent. We are in a long distance relationship. I live in Europe, she lives in Asia. This has been going on for the past 2 years now, and during that time we’ve visited each other 4 times, usually for several weeks. The first time I went to Asia we met up and for the about 2 weeks that we were together nothing was out of the ordinary, no allergic reaction whatsoever.
The second time we met up she came to Europe, and that’s when problems started. After about a few days she started to develop an allergic reaction. The symptoms were: hives or rash on her face, ears, parts of her arms and legs with quite severe itching, to the point when she had difficulty sleeping and couldn’t stop scratching. It looked like small red bumps. Also her eyes were extremely itchy to the point where it was hard for her not to keep rubbing them. After some time her private parts also got itchy. The itch was pretty much unbearable so we went to get some creams and medicine at the drug store. I’m not sure what kind of cream that was, but the medicine was the antihistamine ‘’cetirizine’’. Also we got a kind of eye drops that provided only temporary relief. All of these things had minimal effect as the rash continued throughout that visit. As soon as she left here, her symptoms gradually disappeared over the period of 1 to 2 weeks.
We started thinking about what could be the cause. We thought it may have been my fabric softener or detergent, so from that point on I changed to exclusively 100% neutral allergen free detergent so that that could not be the cause on my next visit.
The third time we met up I went to Asia. Apparently I was carrying the allergen again because after 1 or 2 days her symptoms started appearing again. By this time I had been washing with the allergen free detergent for 1 or 2 months. The symptoms were exactly the same as the last time, however of somewhat lesser degree, but still enough to be very uncomfortable. To take some measures I started washing with her soaps and shampoos, and to be sure I washed all of my clothing again with her detergent. Also I avoided using any deodorants and stuff like that, despite it being in the middle of a hot summer. Also I don’t use any hair gels. Again her symptoms went away about a week after I left.
Sometime later I went to Asia again to visit. This visit was kind of bad in general as we got flu for different reasons. Despite that, her symptoms reoccurred again after a day or two, to a similar lesser degree like last visit. She went to a doctor and got some different medicine for allergy that worked only somewhat. Again her symptoms went away about a week after I left.
Recently she got a general allergy test for the most common allergies. The results only showed around 50% chance of allergy for dogs. She has frequent contact with a dog which give her no allergic reaction. Also a very small percentage of allergy to cats. I do have cats in the house, but actually her family house has also had a cat since she was younger. She has never gotten a reaction from that cat, and no reaction recently still. So unless Asian cats and European cats differ greatly in terms of the allergens they carry, that also seems an unlikely cause. The test also showed a very small percentage for allergy to molds and fungus. As far as I know I don’t have those around my house, and I don’t see how I could have carried a sufficient amount of that to Asia in my suitcase. Molds also seem unlikely. The test shows she is not allergic to pollen and dust mites, unlike me. I’m allergic to dust mites myself.
On the internet I’ve been reading up about allergies to a protein in semen that some people have. This also seems unlikely. For reasons we don’t really have oral or anal sex down below, with or without condom (which would also eliminate latex allergy). I can say semen has made contact with her mouth, but no allergic reaction has developed in or around her mouth which would make semen allergy unlikely.
As far as she knows she’s never had any allergic reaction to any kind of food.
I really hope the allergy is not the result of some sort of psychosomatic response. (perhaps in combination with some otherwise harmless allergen). I wouldn’t really know how we could deal with such an allergic response.
Is there maybe something we overlooked? Some other possible causes that come to mind? She will be visiting again soon and I really hope we can prevent her allergies this time. Many thanks for all the help and advice you can provide.
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