FCAAIA Notes: The vast majority of children with asthma have allergies and should have allergy testing. Therefore, a thorough history of environmental exposures, correlated with the patient’s history and his testing results allow for focused recommendations for allergen avoidance.
The role of allergy in asthma is so well established that national and international guidelines for the care of asthma indicate that patients with persistent asthma (and allergy) should be considered candidates for allergy shots. Continue reading “AAP: INDOOR ALLERGEN TESTING ‘A MUST’ FOR KIDS WITH ASTHMA”
FCAAIA Notes: The question of which children will outgrow asthma and which will not is highly complex and cannot be answered with one study. There are many contributing factors. It is likely that ongoing exposure to any trigger that increases allergic inflammation in the bronchi decreases likelihood of asthma resolving. Talk to your allergist about the likely allergenic exposures contributing to your child’s asthma and allergies. Then, ask what you can do to decrease those exposures. Continue reading “KIDS’ ASTHMA MORE LIKELY TO LINGER WITH PET ALLERGIES”
FCAAIA NOTES: Few cat owners would have thought cats could get more complex. But from an allergy standpoint, what we know about their allergens (the proteins they make that trigger allergic symptoms) has gotten much more multifaceted. This group of researchers from the University of Virginia at Richmond has been studying indoor allergens for decades and has produced work that led to some of our basic understanding about the indoors and allergy. Important points that are reinforced in this article: 1. Cat allergen is everywhere (schools, work places, and your home even if you do not own a cat), 2. You may or may not have a positive test to cat even if you live with one. 3. A positive test to cat does not mean you are allergic. It means you have the immunologic potential to be allergic and must be interpreted in the context of your history, and 4. The degree of positivity of the test does not predict the degree of clinical sensitivity. Continue reading “THE INDOOR AIR AND ASTHMA: THE ROLE OF CAT ALLERGENS”
FCAAIA Notes: MOLD!!!! The very word strikes fear in the hearts and minds of people with allergies (and some people without allergies). First of all, mold can, but rarely does cause anything more than allergy and asthma symptoms. Secondly, you are breathing mold with every breath you take except when you are out side and there is snow on the ground. This review reveals that dampness, water damage, and visible mold are the most reliable predictors that mold MIGHT be contributing to symptoms. Having your home tested is rarely necessary (and can be costly). Even if the tests reveal a particular mold in your home, it only tells you that you are exposed, not that the mold causes symptoms. Positive skin tests to mold only tell us that you mounted an immune response to the mold, not that the mold is necessarily a problem. The test results must be correlated with your symptom pattern. A detailed history and review of tests results with your allergist will help you put all your potential triggers in perspective. Continue reading “RESPIRATORY AND ALLERGIC HEALTH EFFECTS OF DAMPNESS, MOLD, AND DAMPNESS-RELATED AGENTS: A Review of the Epidemiologic Evidence”