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KALEB, 5, cannot eat. He does not just have a peanut allergy or a milk allergy. He is allergic to all food. The only things he can put in his mouth are water and a certain brand of lemonade .
He is fed for 20 hours a day through a machine that pumps nutrients directly into his stomach. Unless doctors can find a cure, he will never have his first beer, or a birthday cake, the Advertiser reports.
“Ill” is a mild descriptive for what Tylor went through for most of his life. He was 4 years old the first time he got violently sick after eating. By the time he was 6, the diarrhea and vomiting were getting worse, but his doctors could find nothing wrong with him, putting his digestive problems down to stomach viruses.
By the time he was 10, Tylor’s situation was desperate. He was passing out, going into convulsions and passing blood from both ends of his digestive tract. His weight was down to less than 50 pounds, his growth stunted, his body little more than skin and bones.
His mystified doctors took out his appendix, thinking that might be the problem, but he showed no improvement.
Last September, specialists at Great Ormond Street Hospital in London, where he’d been undergoing tests since April 2006, realized that what Tylor had wasn’t a stomach virus but an extremely rare condition called eosinophilic enteropathy.
The disorder causes his intestines to produce too many white blood cells that act as an immune system and attack food passing through the gut.
Doctors found that he was allergic to nearly everything he ate, including wheat, gluten, dairy products, eggs and soy products.
They took him off all food, feeding him a liquid formula through a gastric tube inserted through his nose. They then introduced him to one food at a time, making sure he could tolerate it before adding another. Recently, tuna joined chicken as a protein source.
Although Tylor could eat again, he still needs to be fed vitamins and minerals in liquid form.
Since getting the stomach tube and finding solid foods he can eat without getting sick, Tylor is thriving.