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Author Topic: How long would someone be able to live if they suddenly became allergic to H2O?  (Read 3255 times)

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SpacialParadox

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Inspired by this tale - https://www.thefreelibrary.com/JUST+ONE+CUP+OF+WATER+COULD+KILL+LITTLE+HEIDI%3B+Girl%27s+deadly+allergy...-a061152595

Let's say someone is so allergic to H2O that a sip of water will send them into anaphylactic shock, (requiring a shot of adrenaline every time they take a sip of water) and if they get IV'd with a drip, they react to the water being injected into their body (such as is the case with the link I posted above).

I'm not talking about a mere skin irritation that isn't actually an allergy (Aquagenic Urticaria - which doesn't affect drinking as it's a skin condition only), I'm talking a full on potentially life threatening allergy to the H2O molecule when it is ingested as well like in the story above.

Basically, every time the mast cell immunoglobulins (located outside of the cell, along its surface) saw H2O molecules, it'd cause the mast cells to degranulate and release histamine.

Is it plausible that a person would live so long as to get a news article made about them?
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Arkcon

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https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=858309

https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=858039

These crazy news stories get tedious after a while.  This isn't a good way for students to learn.
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Hey, I'm not judging.  I just like to shoot straight.  I'm a man of science.

SpacialParadox

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https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=858309

https://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?t=858039

These crazy news stories get tedious after a while.  This isn't a good way for students to learn.

Someone said that the news sites I gave were reputable. What is your verdict on the story?
Though I am aware of Aquagenic Urticaria, it is neither an allergy nor does it affect drinking as it's just a skin condition. ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aquagenic_urticaria ) I'm not entirely sure why the article says she has Aquagenic Urticaria since she doesn't just react on her skin but also inside her body. People with Aquagenic Urticaria can drink water with no issues however the article says this Heidi girl once drunk a sip of water by accident and went into anaphylaxis that required adrenaline to reverse, which rules out Aquagenic Urticaria which is a skin condition and she reacts to water internally.

She survives on 4 small glasses of milk or orange juice a day.

In a ''world first'', she had an appendix surgery done where the doctors did not use any water products during the surgery. She then had an IV but had a massive internal reaction as the drip was ''water based''.

Here's some more articles on her - https://www.birminghammail.co.uk/news/local-news/water-allergy-girl-reaches-21st-58672

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/thieves-shatter-allergy-girls-life-1317690.html Is the H2O molecule an allergen or can it be classified as one? Can it bind to the IgE receptors on mast cells?
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Babcock_Hall

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As a generalization small molecules cannot elicit an immune response by themselves.  If the small molecule is covalently linked (joined) to a macromolecule, then this chemical species can.  The small molecule may be termed a hapten.

Antibodies move around in a soup of water and diverse biomolecules.  They have to bind to their target preferentially.
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wildfyr

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Ok, you have been posting this one reddit but once and for all: Every biological fluid is water based. All of them. Each fluid in your body is primarily water. Period. As is orange juice. As is milk.

If you don't believe the myriad of chemists who have told you this, I invite you to learn chemistry, then take an FTIR of these liquids.
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SpacialParadox

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Ok, you have been posting this one reddit but once and for all: Every biological fluid is water based. All of them. Each fluid in your body is primarily water. Period. As is orange juice. As is milk.

If you don't believe the myriad of chemists who have told you this, I invite you to learn chemistry, then take an FTIR of these liquids.

Are you saying Heidi and her parents faked the whole thing since she was born? To what reason?
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billnotgatez

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This topic has run its course
We do not need to discuss it further on our forum
@SpacialParadox you need to go elsewhere to discuss this

The topic is now locked


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