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I read Dr. Mitchell's blog faithfully. It helps me find tips on how to prevent my asthma symptoms, and get information on the latest developments in treatment.

Breakthrough In Peanut Allergy Treatment Research

breakthrough in peanut allergy treatment researchWithout a doubt, peanut allergy is one of the scariest and most dangerous food allergies that exists. I have cared for both adult and infant patients with peanut allergies, and many have experienced serious anaphylactic (allergic emergency) reactions due to peanut exposure.


The Frustrating Problem

What really frustrated me as an allergy specialist was the lack of options when treating patients allergic to peanuts. The most I could do was write a prescription for an epinephrine injector and tell them to avoid peanut exposure.

The exciting news is that this could be able to change. We are on the brink of a major advancement in peanut allergy treatment.


New Treatment

Researchers at Duke and Johns Hopkins Medical Centers recently published results from a new multi-center study of clinical trials with patients allergic to peanuts. These patients were treated for peanut allergy with sublingual allergy drops or oral peanut allergy powder.

Although this research was carried out with a small sample group, the new data did show some promising findings. After one year of treatment for peanut allergy, the patients treated with sublingual allergy drops were 22X less likely to have a severe reaction to a peanut ingestion. The patients treated with the oral peanut powder were 141X less likely to have an adverse reaction.

peanutsThis is impressive data! And compared to doing no treatment at all, I believe it is a welcome new approach. It should be noted that although the sublingual drops were less effective than the oral powder, the sublingual drops were safer and had less allergic reactions or need for epinephrine injections.

Interestingly, the researchers found that by measuring a blood test called peanut specific IgG4 they were better able to predict which patients would likely pass the peanut challenge test.


At Mitchell Medical Group

In my practice, I use the state of the art blood test called the UKnow Peanut test. This blood test measures specific proteins that give a more accurate assessment of whether you truly have a dangerous peanut allergy. I wrote a medical article 2 years ago for pediatricians explaining how to interpret this test.


What Can A Patient With Peanut Allergy Do Right Now?

peanuts and peanut butterYou can get treatment using the oral peanut powder. A Connecticut based colleague of mine, Dr. Jeff Factor, is currently treating his patients using this method. It can be a complicated procedure and patients do have allergic reactions in the desensitization period. But he has successfully protected numerous peanut allergic patients. I admire him for going ahead of other doctors and taking the risks associated with any new procedure, especially one with such high stakes.

As an allergy doctor, I’m excited about the prospect of the sublingual peanut immunotherapy becoming perfected to help patients. As many of you may know, my special expertise has been in sublingual allergy immunotherapy (see my book, Dr. Dean Mitchell’s Allergy and Asthma Solution) but because the peanut protocols have rarely been implemented outside of clinical studies I have not jumped in yet.

My main advice to peanut allergic patients: hold tight, some great new treatments are just around the corner!

Frog Allergy: Leapin’ Lizards, My First Case in 25 Years!

After 25 years of practicing allergy, I have diagnosed and treated patients with allergies from many creatures that roam our beautiful earth. I have:

  • frog allergy: frogSuccessfully treated hundreds of children and adults allergic to cats and dogs.
  • Had amazing results treating patients with horse allergy, one who was a competitive equestrian rider.
  • Had a laboratory assistant who was allergic to and worked with rabbits. I helped him keep his job through treatment. There were also school children who loved their class bunnies but were allergic. I treated them with great results.
  • Guinea pigs and hamsters are a popular pet. I have successfully treated several children who were allergic to them but refused to give them up.

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Tree Pollen Allergy: The Ultimate Survival Guide

The famous boxer, Joe Louis, was once quoted saying his opponent ‘He can run, but he can’t hide.’

Tree pollen in the airThe same might be said for patients with spring tree pollen allergy symptoms. You can try to run and hide by going indoors, but eventually you will have to go outside and face the pollen.

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Allergies Can be a Real Pain in the Neck

The fields of orthopedics and allergy seem to have little in common. You break a leg, you go see the orthopedist and have a cast put on. You have severe sneezing fits, you see the allergist who gives you a nasal spray. Do the two paths ever cross?

 

allergies: guy in a brace

The Doctor Joke

This reminds me of a doctor joke… two doctors walk into a bar, one an orthopedist the other an allergist. A young man in a neck brace was also in the bar sipping a beer. The orthopedist walks over and says “What happened? Can I help you I’m an orthopedist?”

The young man looks past him and asks if his friend is also a doctor, and if so what type? The orthopedist replies: “Oh, he’s just an allergist, he can’t help you.”

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Fruit and Pollen Allergies: The Double-Whammy

fruit allergiesThinking back to my childhood bible studies, the sin of Adam was eating the forbidden fruit from the apple tree. Today, it seems the sin of eating the apple lies with my patients who have pollen allergies as they may also experience symptoms of an allergy to fruit.

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Allergy Drops vs. Shots: Which Would You Prefer?

grass pollen allergyThere is exciting news for those of you who suffer from pollen allergies (specifically grass pollen allergies). You can now safely choose between three proven pollen allergy treatment options: sublingual grass pollen tablets, sublingual grass pollen drops or subcutaneous grass pollen injections.

The current Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice (March 2015) published a meta-analysis (which means they looked at and compared multiple published studies) and determined that each of these treatments were equally effective for treatment of pollen allergies.

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Scott Walker’s Dog Allergy and Presidential Race

The headline on the front page of The New York Times on April 1st, 2015 read: Governor, Allergic to Dogs, May Run Against Political History. Believe it or not, this was not an April Fool’s joke!

Happy dogThe article was about Governor Scott Walker, a Republican from Wisconsin, who is running for the presidency in 2016 and appears to have already lost one major constituency – dogs.

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Over-the-Counter Allergy Medications: The Complete Guide

The majority of allergy medications are now available without a prescription. over-the-counter allergy medicationsThis is obviously a good thing if you are an allergy sufferer, as you do not have to see your doctor to get a prescription for a simple treatment.

However, you should be careful. Over-the-counter allergy medications can be tricky if you don’t know all of the benefits or risks of using them.

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Allergy Testing Training for Physicians: Basics Part 1

I (Dr. Dean) am currently involved in expanding allergy training to physicians all over the United States. It is exciting to teach a mix of family physicians, pediatricians, internists and other specialists on how to utilize allergy testing in their own practices. doctor allergy testing skin

When assessing allergic patients, in addition to a good history, there are two options available: allergy skin tests or allergy blood tests. When performed and interpreted properly, these are two very sensitive and specific tests. As a board certified allergist, I use both of these types of testing in my practice to make an accurate allergic diagnosis.

Allergy Skin Testing

Allergy skin testing has never been more simple or safe. When I originally trained in my allergy fellowship 25 years ago, we were trained to do intradermal skin tests.

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Cold Urticaria And Cold Allergy: Not A Joke!

I”ve often joked around with my patients during this brutally cold northeast winter that “I”m allergic to the cold!” The dark, cold winter days are tough can be hard to get through both mentally and physically. However, I don”t want to belittle the existence of cold allergy, because it does really exist!
Cold Written on frost

Cold Urticaria

The medical term, cold urticaria, refers to the condition where a patient that is exposed to cold air or water develops hives (urticarial) and even swelling (angioedema).

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Allergy Relief
Breakthrough In Peanut Allergy Treatment Research

Without a doubt, peanut allergy is one of the scariest and most dangerous food allergies that exists. I have cared for both adult and infant […]

Frog Allergy: Leapin’ Lizards, My First Case in 25 Years!

After 25 years of practicing allergy, I have diagnosed and treated patients with allergies from many creatures that roam our beautiful earth. I have: Successfully treated hundreds […]

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