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| Allergy Testing
Doctors may not be using the right food allergy tests
Updated: 2011-11-23 09:23:03 CST Category: Allergy Testing
Despite the fact that more and more children are becoming allergic to different food items, food allergy testing is not being conducted frequently enough, according to a new study.
Researchers from Northwestern University told MedPage Today that food allergies in children are likely extremely underdiagnosed. This could put many young people at risk for dangerous reactions to some common food items.
The team surveyed the families of more than 40,000 children. Results showed that more than 8 percent had been diagnosed with some form of food allergy, yet only 15.6 percent of these individuals had received an oral food challenge test, which is considered the most effective way to screen for intolerance.
"Guidelines just came out in March of this year from the National Institutes of Health National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases stating that oral food challenge is the proper test to diagnose food allergy, along with medical history and positive skin and blood testing," lead researcher Ruchi Gupta told the news source.
An undiagnosed food allergy can be a serious problem, as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that the condition results in more than 150 deaths each year.
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