health

Victoria was dancing at her wedding. Suddenly, she found herself struggling to breathe.

It was meant to be the most magical moment of their lives. But for New Jersey couple Victoria and Dominic Tumolo, their September wedding day became memorable for all the wrong reasons when the bride had to be rushed to hospital after suffering a severe allergic reaction.

On September 16, the couple – both 25 – had just eaten and were treating their guests to a bridal waltz on the dance floor, when Victoria starting struggling to breathe.

“Everything was going smoothly and it was a really good day,” bride Victoria told The Courier-Post of Cherry Hill.

“We were finally able to dance with each other and dance with our bridal party. And then I felt my throat start to close.

“I started to break out in hives. This had happened to me twice before that, so I knew I was having an allergic reaction.”

Grabbing her new husband and her parents, Victoria rushed outside, where her father had to administer an EpiPen through her wedding dress.

“I had to take my dress off outside so they wouldn’t cut it off me when we got to the hospital,” she said.

Her new husband Dominic joked that taking off his wife’s wedding dress with his mother-in-law in preparation for a trip to the hospital was “not exactly what I was imagining for our wedding night.”

wedding dance allergy
The couple had to abandon their wedding celebrations and rush to the hospital. Image via Facebook.

Despite knowing the symptoms of a severe allergic reaction, and experiencing them before, Victoria had no idea she was allergic to milk and almonds. Her symptoms manifested after she began exercising during her wedding waltz due to a medical condition called exercise-induced anaphylaxis.

According to the Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy (ASCIA), the condition most typically affects young adults, with symptoms including itching, sweating, fainting and bronchial spasm.

The severity of symptoms are influenced by the amount of the food ingestion and the rigorousness of exercise.

Peanut and tree nut allergies are among the most common in the country, with around 83 per cent of children allergic to nuts being affected by a peanut allergy. Around four per cent were allergic to other nuts, like almonds, pecans and walnuts.

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Around 1-2 per cent of Australian preschool children are affected by a milk allergy, according to ASCIA, with most growing out of the allergy by the time they start school.

Despite Victoria being treated quickly at the hospital, the couple were unable to return to their reception and missed out on the rest of the celebration.

"I wanted everyone to stay and have a good time," Victoria said.

"There was a lot of confusion, and some people knew what was going on. My bridesmaids were crying for about an hour. And someone else cut our cake."

Two months on, the couple were given a 'second chance' to enjoy their reception thanks to the caterer and the DJ from the wedding.

"It just struck me, this poor girl. How can you walk away from your wedding reception and your wedding day?" said DJ Sam Catrambone.

wedding dance allergy
The couple were thrown a second wedding by their caterers and DJ. Image via Facebook.

"It broke my heart, so I called [the caterer] Jim Auletto, and said, 'You know Jim, if there is something we can do for this girl, whatever you want to do, I'm in.'"

The duo planned a second reception - with cocktails, dinner and dancing - for the newlyweds.

The pair's original wedding photographer will also be on hand to snap the reception photos Victoria and Dominic never got to pose for.

And, of course, there'll be a brand new wedding cake for the couple to finally cut themselves.

For more information on food allergies click here.

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