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Dr. Scott Sicherer

How Do You Know if an Allergy is Truly Gone?

By Dr. Scott Sicherer

Q: My 6-year-old daughter’s IgE blood test numbers for peanut allergy have significantly decreased, and the allergist is offering an oral challenge test. My question: as allergic reactions aren’t consistent, if she doesn’t react or has only minor symptoms on the day of the oral challenge, can we be certain this allergy is truly gone? …

Dr. Scott Sicherer

Do Reactions Worsen With Each Exposure?

By Dr. Scott Sicherer

Q: Is it true that food allergies to shrimp or peanuts will get worse with every accidental exposure? I had my first (quite bad) reaction to shrimp at 25 years of age, and this worries me. Dr. Sicherer: No, it is not true. It is a common myth that allergic reactions automatically become worse with …

Dr. Susan Waserman

Can I Be Allergic to All Fish But One?

By Dr. Susan Waserman

Q: My girlfriend has confirmed allergies to tuna, anchovies, shrimp, crab, clams and mussels. However, she can eat salmon with no issues. Does it make sense that she could be able to eat salmon but still be allergic to virtually every other creature of the sea? If so, could she consider trying squid or escargot? …

Dr. Susan Waserman

Is it Possible to be Allergic to Kiwi?

By Dr. Susan Waserman

Q: I recently fed my almost-3-year-old son kiwi, and he immediately complained that his “mouth hurt”. His top lip did appear somewhat swollen. We have no history of food allergies in the family, and he has eaten kiwi four or five times before without any reaction. I won’t give it to him again, but what …

Dr. Hemant Sharma

Can You Tell if a Food Allergy is Life-Threatening?

By Dr. Hemant Sharma

Q: What I don’t understand is: how does an expert decide whether a food allergy is “life-threatening” or not? This issue comes up frequently, such as when preparing forms for daycare or schools. Dr. Sharma: Your question is a great one because it points out a major limitation of our currently available food allergy tests, …

Dr. Scott Sicherer

Do Hand Sanitizers Protect Allergic Children?

By Dr. Scott Sicherer

Q: My child’s school insists hand sanitizers are adequate for cleaning up children after eating. But to protect allergic children, don’t they need to use soap and water? Dr. Sicherer: Antibacterial gels and foams do not remove debris from hands, they only kill germs. These sanitizers will not remove milk, peanut or even dirt from …

Dr. Susan Waserman

Advice on Teens who Resist Carrying Auto-Injectors

By Dr. Susan Waserman

Q. My son has tree nut allergy and asthma. He’s 16, starting to date and getting confrontational about not wanting to carry his auto-injector. He also no longer believes he’s that allergic – his only major reaction to cashews was back when he was 3 years old. The allergist doesn’t think his IgE levels are …

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