Immunology

Exposing baby to foods early may help prevent allergies

(HealthDay)—New parents worry about a lot of things, but the American Academy of Pediatrics says one thing they can cross off that list is concern about giving high-allergy foods too early in life.

Immunology

Shellfish allergies: can they be treated?

Seafood platters? Bouillabaisse? Arroz de Marisco? Seafood paella? Oysters Rockefeller? Lobster Thermidor? Dining out with friends, a romantic meal, celebrating Christmas or a holiday on a wind-swept coast with these seafood ...

Medications

Researchers create new device to detect antibiotic allergies

The detection of allergies to antibiotics is currently conducted with a series of in vivo skin tests that are invasive and therefore entail inconveniences. Although in vitro methods do exist, they are not sufficiently sensitive, ...

Immunology

Food allergies: A research update

Promising new therapies for food allergies are on the horizon, including an experimental immunotherapy awaiting federal approval that enables people who are very allergic to eat peanut protein without suffering serious side ...

page 1 from 23

Allergy

Allergy is a disorder of the immune system often also referred to as atopy. Allergic reactions occur to normally harmless environmental substances known as allergens; these reactions are acquired, predictable, and rapid. Strictly, allergy is one of four forms of hypersensitivity and is called type I (or immediate) hypersensitivity. It is characterized by excessive activation of certain white blood cells called mast cells and basophils by a type of antibody known as IgE, resulting in an extreme inflammatory response. Common allergic reactions include eczema, hives, hay fever, asthma, food allergies, and reactions to the venom of stinging insects such as wasps and bees.

Mild allergies like hay fever are highly prevalent in the human population and cause symptoms such as allergic conjunctivitis, itchiness, and runny nose. Allergies can play a major role in conditions such as asthma. In some people, severe allergies to environmental or dietary allergens or to medication may result in life-threatening anaphylactic reactions and potentially death.

A variety of tests now exist to diagnose allergic conditions; these include testing the skin for responses to known allergens or analyzing the blood for the presence and levels of allergen-specific IgE. Treatments for allergies include allergen avoidance, use of anti-histamines, steroids or other oral medications, immunotherapy to desensitize the response to allergen, and targeted therapy.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA