Children Can Develop Tolerance to Egg Allergy

Greek study finds gradual exposure builds resistance over time

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WEDNESDAY, July 23, 2008 (HealthDay News) -- Gradually exposing children with egg allergies to cooked egg could help them overcome the allergy, a new study reports.

In the Greek study, tiny amounts of cake containing heat-treated egg were feed to 94 children every day with the amount of cake gradually increased over six months. Eighty-seven children (90 percent) were able to eat the cake without allergy symptoms.

After six months, the children who did not display allergic reactions attempted to eat an egg not cooked to the same degree as the one in the cake. More than 95 percent experienced no reaction and were thought to have overcome the allergy.

The findings were expected to be published an upcoming issue of the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology.

One in 17 children younger than age 3 has a food allergy, one of the most common being to hen eggs, according to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology (AAAAI). Many children outgrow the egg allergy by school age, but until then, the only effective management is eliminating all egg from their diet.

More information

The U.S. National Library of Medicine has more about food allergies.

SOURCE: American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, news release, July 15, 2008

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