good news on milk al­ler­gies

Sunday Herald Sun - Body and Soul - - LIFESTYLE -

Im­mu­nol­o­gists at Chil­dren’s Hos­pi­tal Bos­ton and the Stan­ford Univer­sity School of Medicine in the US have suc­cess­fully tri­alled an al­lergy drug called oma­l­izumab to help chil­dren over­come their milk al­lergy over a 16-week span.

At present there is no safe and ef­fec­tive treat­ment for al­ler­gies, ex­cept to avoid the al­ler­gen. But avoid­ance can prove chal­leng­ing as chil­dren share food at school and par­ties.

“When you try to go on a diet that is com­pletely free of milk, it is very dif­fi­cult be­cause many foods have a lit­tle bit of milk pro­tein in them,” Stan­ford’s Dr Kari Nadeau says.

“From a prac­ti­cal stand­point, this treat­ment al­lowed these pa­tients to in­crease all types of milk prod­ucts in their di­ets; they were able to eat yo­ghurt, cheese, bread, a muf­fin.”

About one in 20 Aus­tralian chil­dren have a food al­lergy, with re­ac­tions to milk be­ing the most com­mon. Symp­toms can in­clude wheez­ing, stom­ach up­sets, rashes, breath­ing dif­fi­cul­ties, vom­it­ing and a runny nose.

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