Is Milk Allergy Desensitization Ready for Prime Time?

This article is in press and will be published in Annals from the College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology next month.  I thought the study is very interesting given the “push” for oral desensitization.  I just returned from the AAAAI annual meeting and it appears that patients with food allergy can become “desensitized” or cured, however, that comes with a cost of potential anaphylaxis during treatment.  Think of it like the use of allergy shots which are very effective, but you can develop anaphylaxis after an allergy shot that will need additional treatment such as epinephrine.  The question I have is, “should this therapy with foods be used at home where parents and patients don’t know much about giving epi?” 

milk

Here’s the summary–>Asthma patients are at risk for more severe reactions and less likely to reach full desensitization during milk oral immunotherapy, according to a study in Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. Researchers in Israel studied 194 subjects 6 years and older with IgE-mediated cow’s milk allergy, with and without asthma, undergoing milk oral immunotherapy. Regardless of severity, subjects with asthma had more reactions and injectable epinephrine use during induction, and more home treatments with immunotherapy. Moderate to severe asthma also was associated with a lower likelihood of reaching full desensitization

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2 thoughts on “Is Milk Allergy Desensitization Ready for Prime Time?

  1. Nice summary. I have been practicing for almost 17 years as an allergist/immunologist and I share in the expectant anxiety about finding effective and safe protocols to treat food allergies.

    1. The Academy meeting was a good review for research on treating food allergy with oral desensitization and the results confirm that systemic reactions do occur. The question is whether more reactions occur with treatment or accidental ingestions in the untreated patient. Thanks for your comments.

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