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American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, Oct. 26-30

The 2017 Annual Meeting of the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology

The annual meeting of the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology was held from Oct. 26 to 30 in Boston and attracted approximately 3,500 participants from around the world, including allergy and immunology specialists as well as other health care professionals. The conference featured presentations focused on the latest advances in the prevention and treatment of asthma, food and medication allergies, immune dysfunction, and sleep apnea.

In one study, Mona Liu, M.D., and colleagues studied 39 children between ages 1 and 17 years admitted to a hospital for asthma.

"Out of the patients admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU), 62 percent had family history of asthma. Only 14 percent of patients who were admitted to the hospital but not to the ICU had a similar family history," Liu said in a statement. "In addition, if the child had eczema, that was associated with longer hospital stay and continuous albuterol."

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In a workshop entitled "Moving Toward Precision Medicine in Atopic Dermatitis," allergists discussed new treatments for atopic dermatitis, including crisaborole, an ointment that reduces itching, redness and swelling of the skin, and dupilumab, an injected medication.

Crisaborole is the first anti-inflammatory medication to be approved for the treatment of mild to moderate atopic dermatitis in more than 15 years, according to a news release issued by the ACAAI. It is approved for patients 2 years of age or older. Dupilumab is a biologic therapy given by injection for patients 18 years or older with moderate to severe atopic dermatitis who haven't responded to, or who cannot use, topical medications.

"The takeaway message is that there are effective medications available that help relieve eczema symptoms and now can also target the underlying cause," workshop presenter Mark Boguniewicz, M.D., of National Jewish Health in Denver, said in a statement. "People with eczema have been frustrated by the limitations of existing treatments. We're very excited by the new medications which were developed based on better understanding of atopic dermatitis."

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Ruchi Gupta, M.D., M.P.H., and Christopher Warren, of Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago, and colleagues found that nearly half of food-allergic adults experienced at least one adult-onset allergy, which is greater than previously estimated.

"Shellfish was the most common food allergy reported by adults in our sample, with shrimp the most common specific shellfish allergen," said Warren. "Alongside questions about medication allergies, physicians should ask their adult and pediatric patients about whether they have experienced any adverse reactions to foods and carry out the recommended testing and/or allergist referral."

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In another study, Gupta, Warren, and colleagues found that the prevalence of peanut allergy has increased since 2010, now affecting an estimated 2.5 percent of children and adolescents.

"With the observed rise in peanut allergy and the disparities we have observed, it is particularly important that pediatricians ask all families about adverse reactions to foods and if needed refer to an allergist," said Warren. "Given the substantial population-level burden of peanut allergy we have observed in our latest prevalence data, it is more important now than ever that clinicians educate themselves about and implement the new addendum guidelines for the prevention of peanut allergy, which recommend that peanut be introduced into most infants' diets by six months of age in order to promote immune tolerance."

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ACAAI: Doctors Not Adhering to New Peanut Guidelines

FRIDAY, Oct. 27, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Many pediatricians are not adhering to revised guidelines for peanut allergies that recommend early introduction to high-risk infants, according to a study presented at the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology Annual Scientific Meeting, being held Oct. 26 to 30 in Boston.

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ACAAI: Telemedicine Can Be Beneficial in Allergy Care

FRIDAY, Oct. 27, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Telemedicine is supported as a method of health care delivery for allergists and immunologists, according to a position paper presented at the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology Annual Scientific Meeting, being held Oct. 26 to 30 in Boston.

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Physician's Briefing