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Severity of Peanut Allergy and the Unmet Gaps in Care: A Call to Action
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Severity of Peanut Allergy and the Unmet Gaps in Care: A Call to Action

Jay A. Lieberman, MD
Peanut allergy is one of the most common food allergies in children, with a prevalence that has been increasing over the past several decades. The allergy is a type I, immunoglobulin E (IgE)-mediated reaction that commonly presents in childhood and can be associated with an anaphylactic response. There are many theories that attempt to explain the increasing prevalence, including dietary changes, improvements in hygiene, and intentional allergen avoidance. Diagnosis is made through a combination of a thorough patient history, peanut-specific serum-specific IgE levels, peanut skin-prick test, and, if necessary, an oral food challenge. Guidelines based on the landmark 2015 Learning Early About Peanut Allergy trial suggest that peanuts should be introduced into the diet as early as 4 to 6 months of age in infants who are at highest risk of developing peanut allergy. It is important for providers to recognize risk factors for the development of peanut allergy, identify associated clinical symptoms, and provide an accurate diagnosis of patients to effectively manage them and their families and prevent future reactions.
Am J Manag Care. 2018;24:-S0

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