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Causes for High Rates of Allergic Reactions in Children with Food Allergies Identified


Causes for High Rates of Allergic Reactions in Children with Food Allergies Identified

(epharmanews)- Despite the fact that many children suffer one type of food allergy or another, allergic reactions have recently increased which motivated researchers to conduct a study to explore the reasons behind that.

Researchers from Mount Sinai School of Medicine and four other institutions found that young children with documented or likely allergies to milk and/or eggs, whose families were instructed on how to avoid these and other foods, still experienced allergic reactions at a rate of almost once per year. Of severe cases, less than a third received epinephrine, a medication used to counter anaphylaxis, a life-threatening allergic condition.

The findings are from an ongoing Consortium of Food Allergy Research (CoFAR) study that has been following more than 500 children with food allergies since infancy. The results of the three-year study appear online in the June 25 issue of Pediatrics.

The study found that 72% of the studied children experienced an allergic reaction, with 1,171 allergic reactions in total, due to many factors such as the lack of close supervision, misreading ingredient labels, cross-contamination, or errors in food preparation.

Up to 11% of the participants experienced anaphylaxis which can include symptoms such as swelling in the throat, asthma, sudden drop in blood pressure, dizziness or fainting.

Parents and caregivers administered epinephrine in only 30 percent of the cases of children having severe reactions to food. The rest of the participants did not receive the drug either because it was not available, or because parents were too afraid to administer the drug because they, or they did not recognize the reaction as severe and waited to see more symptoms.

"This study reinforces the importance of educating parents and other caregivers of children with food allergy about avoiding allergenic foods and using epinephrine to treat severe food-allergic reactions," said Scott Sicherer, MD, Professor of Pediatrics and Chief of the Division of Allergy and Immunology at Mount Sinai School of Medicine. "We must work harder to thoroughly educate parents about the details of avoidance and when and how to correctly use epinephrine to manage this life-threatening condition."

"We found a significant number of young children received allergenic foods from caregivers other than their parents," said Hugh Sampson, MD, Dean for Translational Biomedical Sciences, Professor of Pediatrics, and Director of the Jaffe Food Allergy Institute at Mount Sinai School of Medicine. "This underscores the need to educate everyone who is responsible for the child, including grandparents, older siblings and teachers."


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Prepared by: Nessrin Biram


Source :

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