Food allergies develop when the immune system mistakenly identifies a certain food as harmful, triggering symptoms like digestive distress, hives, swollen airways or anaphylaxis.
Whether you or your child’s food allergy is minor or severe, our specialists at the Lung & Allergy Institute of Los Angeles are able to provide a definitive diagnosis and effective treatment – controlling your symptoms and preventing future attacks.
Early Peanut Introduction Clinic
This is a clinic for infants at high risk of peanut allergy that was created for the safe early introduction of peanut into the diet, with the goal of decreasing the likelihood that these infants will go on to develop peanut allergy. The clinic concept builds upon the findings of the recent well-publicized LEAP study and is consistent with the American Academy of Pediatrics and other prominent medical societies’ joint statement on interim guidance for introduction of peanuts for high-risk infants.Learn More »
The symptoms your body produces in response to a particular food can vary in severity. For some individuals, the symptoms are simply uncomfortable, while they could be life-threatening for others. Symptoms typically develop within a few minutes to two hours after eating the trigger food, and may include:
- Itching or tingling in the mouth.
- Itchy skin or eczema.
- Swelling, either on the lips, face, tongue, throat or other areas of the body.
- Wheezing and trouble breathing.
- Nasal congestion.
- Digestive distress, including abdominal pain, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting.
- Feeling dizzy or lightheaded.
In severe cases, you may experience anaphylaxis – which is a severe and potentially life-threatening reaction to an allergen. It can cause a loss of consciousness, a significant drop in blood pressure, severe breathlessness, rash, nausea, vomiting and a rapid pulse. If you or your child experiences symptoms associated with anaphylaxis, call 911 for emergency help. Once the anaphylaxis has been treated, it’s important to seek treatment at the Lung & Allergy Institute of Los Angeles to get your allergies under control and prevent future attacks.
How are food allergies treated?
Traditionally, food allergy has been treated through identification of the offending food and avoidance of that food. Patients also carry epinephrine auto-injectors to use in case of severe or life-threatening allergies. We are the only center in Southern California that offers treatment of food allergy through oral immunotherapy (OIT)Learn More »
What causes food allergies?
Food allergies are commonly triggered by a small group of foods, including shellfish, peanuts, walnuts, pecans, fish, eggs, milk and wheat.
Individuals are considered to be at an increased risk for food allergies if they are already diagnosed with other allergies or asthma, or if they have a strong family history of asthma, allergies, eczema and hives. In addition, food allergies are most common among young children, who may or may not outgrow them as they age.
How are food allergies diagnosed?
If you suspect you or your child suffers from food allergies, it’s important to make an appointment at the Lung & Allergy Institute of Los Angeles for a definitive diagnosis from one of our allergist in Los Angeles. During your appointment, we will first collect information about your medical history and symptoms, before performing a full physical examination. Depending on our findings, we may order very specific tests to confirm a diagnosis, including:
Skin prick test
During this test, we will introduce a very small amount of the suspected food allergen into the skin. This will elicit a small hive at the site of the test if you are in fact allergic.
Allergy blood test
During this test, we will determine how your immune system responds to a specific allergen by measuring the amount of antibodies in your bloodstream.
By eliminating suspected foods from your diet for two weeks and then re-introducing them one at a time, we are able to more accurately determine which specific food is causing your symptoms.
If you or your child suffers from food allergies, please know that relief is possible with among the best food allergy treatment Orange County has available. Please contact us today to schedule an appointment, and let us help you control your symptoms, prevent future attacks and get your allergies under control.Contact Us