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Opinion I had the red meat allergy. Now I can eat meat again.

A lone star tick. (Keith Tremel/Michael Raupp for The Washington Post) (Keith Tremel / Michael Raupp/FTWP)
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Regarding the May 2 Metro article “A bite from this tick, found locally, can cause lifelong allergy to red meat”:

There is life after alpha-gal syndrome. I had anaphylaxis and was the second alpha-gal allergy victim in my central Virginia county when diagnosed in 2009. The syndrome had been isolated at the Allergy Center in Charlottesville by Scott P. Commins and Thomas A.E. Platt-Mills. They were among the writers who published a technical article in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology in 2009.

Subsequently, I consulted directly with Dr. Commins and took three blood tests, 18 months apart, that reflected a gradually decreasing sensitivity. Early on, Dr. Commins predicted a decline and advised me to challenge my system with small meat samples. After beginning with half an ounce of ground pork, over the course of four years, I slowly built up to normal servings of lean pork, crispy bacon and ham. At 10 years, I could eat small portions of lean beef. At 13 years, I ate a full serving of beef tips.

In none of those challenges did I experience any significant reaction. In retrospect, I suspect I could have progressed faster.

Perry Cabot, Jeffersonton, Va.

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