OBJECTIVE: To describe the prevalence of food allergy in Asian patients with allergic rhinitis.
STUDY DESIGN: A non-randomized prospectively collected patients over a three year period, with complaints of nose congestion, rhinorrhea and/or nasal discharge.
RESULTS: There were 435 patients enrolled, 213 children and 222 adults. The children group had a high prevalence of allergen specific IgE to Dermatophagoides pteryonysinus (70%), Dermatophagoides farina (69%), and Blomia tropicalis (55%); followed by dogs (32%), cats (19%) and cockroaches (19%). In the children food allergy category, the top three allergens were egg white (54%), milk (31%) and soya bean (13%). The adult group had results of Dermatophagoides pteryonysinus (71%), Dermatophagoides farina (72%), and Blomia tropicalis (59%); the adult food allergy category, the top 3 allergens were egg white (13%), milk (6%) and soya bean (5%). There was a statistically significant difference in the child and adult group for Dust, D. pteryonysinus, D. farina, B.tropicalis, egg white, wheat, gluten and soya bean. In the age specific child groups, there was an increased in egg food allergy levels, with a peak at the age of five-nine years old and decreasing thereafter (p=0.04). In the children group, the mean Total Nasal Symptom Score (TNSS) was 10.3 (range of 7 to 13); the adult group was similar, with a mean TNSS of 9.8 (range 5 to 12).
CONCLUSION: The prevalence of food allergy in paediatric patients with allergic rhinitis is fairly high and should be considered when treating these children.
* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.