Family Allergy Asthma & Sinus Care is located in Charlotte, NC, (Pineville), Enjoy our Educational Blog:

3/21/2015: Spring is in the air; which means March Madness for allergy sufferers!

March through May is peak tree pollen season.  A single plant can release up to a billion grains of pollen per season.  While most of the pollen grains fall within a few feet, some may blow in the wind for many miles.  For those persons allergic to pollen, only a few hundred pollen grains are needed to cause itchy, watery eyes, nasal stuffiness, sneezing, runny nose and fatigue.  These symptoms can decrease your quality of life: interfere with sleep and daily activities, become less productive at work, less effective learning at school and lead to sinus infections.

It is difficult to avoid exposure to pollens, but here are some tips to minimize exposure:

  • Keep windows closed to prevent pollens from drifting into your home.
  • Minimize early morning activity when pollen is usually emitted between 5-10 a.m.
  • Keep your car windows closed when traveling.
  • Stay indoors when the pollen count is reported to be high, and on windy days when pollen may be present in higher amounts in the air.
  • Wear sunglasses to prevent pollen entering the eyes.
  • Hire someone else do your yard work or wear a respiratory face mask.
  • Avoid freshly cut grass and mowing the lawn.
  • Shower and wash your hair before bed to prevent tracking pollen into your room.
  • Avoiding drying clothes outside on peak pollen days.
  • If you have pollen-food allergy syndrome, avoid fresh fruits and vegetables with cross reactive proteins.
When avoidance measures are not enough, various medications can relieve the symptoms.  For those persons with moderate to severe symptoms, allergy shots can improve symptoms, potentially prevent developing new allergies and possibly prevent the development of asthma and prevent asthma exacerbations.  Allergy shots can reduce symptoms in up to 85% of patients with seasonal allergies.  Find relief now and schedule an appointment for your evaluation and individualized treatment plan.

3/4/2015: Peanut Allergy Patch Treatment

Epicutaneous Immunotherapy (EPIT) introduces new way to treat peanut allergies!

Peanut Allergy:

  • Peanut allergy is one of the most serious food allergies and is responsible for the majority of food anaphylaxis reactions and food allergy deaths.  At least 1% of the U.S. population has peanut allergy.  Current treatment for peanut allergy is inadequate and insufficient.  The only present treatment is strict avoidance. While desensitization for peanut allergy with injections/shots resulted in very serious side effects and oral desensitization to peanut is still in clinical trials, a new option is now on the horizon. The goal is to find a safe method  to induce tolerance in peanut allergic patients so if an accidental exposure/ingestion occurs, a severe anaphylactic reaction can be prevented.

New Study:

  • Epicutaneous immunotherapy (EPIT or allergy patches) may become a new way to induce tolerance as peanut-allergic patients receive tiny doses of peanut proteins absorbed through patches placed on their skin. In this study, the peanut patch is known as Viaskin® Peanut.  This international, double-blind, placebo controlled randominzed study, was funded by DBV Technologies.
  • Study subjects: Males and females ages 6 to 55 years old with peanut allergy were recruited.  221 peanut-allergic individuals were assigned to test 50µg, 100 µg, or 250 µg peanut patch doses (or placebo doses) for 1 year.  The subjects (patients) underwent an oral peanut challenge at entry and at 1 year to determine their threshold of reactivity. The Viaskin® Patch was place on the upper arm.  For most patients, about 1/2 peanut is likely to trigger symptoms.

Results:

  • Half of the patients who wore the 250 µg peanut patch daily for 1 year, were able to tolerate at least 1 gram of peanut protein (that is about 4 peanuts).  This amount is 10 times the dose they tolerated at their entry oral peanut challenge.
  • Compliance was >95% and <1% of the participants dropped out of the study due to side effects.  There were no serious side effects related to the patch treatment.
  • Overall, children treated with the 250 µg patch experienced a 19-fold increase in peanut-specific IgG4 levels, the antibody associated with protection following immunotherapy.

Conclusion:

  • EPIT using the higher dose of peanut allergen appeared to be safe, well tolerated and effective. This treatment is not FDA approved but these early study results are promising news for families who suffer from peanut allergy.

At Family Allergy Asthma & Sinus Care, we keep you up-to-date on potential treatments on the horizon.  Stay tuned!





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These educational information does not take the place of your physician's advice.


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