The results of a survey presented at the annual meeting of the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology (ACAAI) indicate that for many, the burden of peanut allergy does not decrease after childhood. Many adults still report a diminished quality of life even if they were diagnosed at an early age.
The study, presented by author Anna Nowak-Wegrzyn, MD, professor and division chair of Pediatric Allergy & Immunology at NYU Langone School of Medicine, highlighted the need for food allergy treatments that are able to instill confidence to patients in managing their conditions.
“I think peanut-allergic adults mostly fly under the radar—the attention is mostly given to children, for good reason,” she said. “We feel like adults have been living with this condition, they’re responsible, they know how to do it. But it’s not really so.”
Here is an interview with Dr Nowak-Wegrzyn discussing the study by MD Magazine:
150 adult patients were surveyed to complete an assessment. Participants were a mean 31.4 years old, with 65.4% being female and 64.1% being white. About 2 in 5 (40.5%) were diagnosed with a peanut allergy between 0-6 years old, and most (85.6%) were prescribed an epinephrine autoinjector.
Of those patients, 88.7% reported carrying it at least 75% of the time. Though all surveyed patients stated they actively avoided peanut allergen, 32% still felt “not at all/somewhat confident” in managing their reactions, and 39.2% felt “not at all/somewhat in control” of peanut allergies.