Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Children with serious insect-sting allergies should get shots to avoid life-threatening reactions

12.08.2004


Children who have severe allergic reactions when stung by bees, wasps and other insects should receive venom immunotherapy, or allergy shots, to reduce the chance of future life-threatening reactions if a repeat sting should occur, said an allergist at UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas.



In an editorial published in today’s issue of The New England Journal of Medicine, Dr. Rebecca Gruchalla, chief of the allergy division of internal medicine and associate professor of pediatrics at UT Southwestern, recommends the shots for children who have had a serious systemic allergic reaction to an insect sting.

Systemic allergic reactions go beyond the expected swelling and pain at the sting site and could include low blood pressure, tightness in the chest and swelling in the throat. These type reactions require immediate medical care due to their life-threatening nature, she said.


"Claritin isn’t going to be able to fix this," Dr. Gruchalla said of the over-the-counter medicine used for seasonal allergies. "Severe reactions to stings and the stuffiness caused by ragweed are mediated by the same ’allergy antibody,’ immunoglobulin E, but the clinical manifestations are very different.

"It’s similar to having a food allergy. The majority of kids with documented food allergies have only mild hive reactions when they eat the ’culprit’ food, but for those with a severe allergy, the reaction could be deadly."

The article accompanies a study by researchers from the Johns Hopkins Asthma and Allergy Center in Baltimore. Researchers found that children who had severe allergic reactions to bee stings and who were given the venom allergy shots were significantly less likely to suffer life-threatening reactions when restung, even if the repeat sting happened years later.

"The common belief has been that children typically outgrow insect sting allergies and for this reason, venom immunotherapy may not be needed. This study sets the record straight," Dr. Gruchalla said, adding that the therapy is not necessary for kids who suffer from allergic skin reactions such as hives.

"Hopefully now, since hard data have been provided, physicians will be able to move beyond previous misconceptions and endorse venom immunotherapy for these children most at risk," she said.

The culprits responsible for most of the reactions include honeybees, bumblebees, yellow jackets, yellow hornets, white-faced hornets, paper wasps and fire ants.

There are at least 40 fatal stings in the nation each year but it is likely that many deaths go unreported, Dr. Gruchalla said. Almost 1 percent of all children are reported to have a medical history of severe allergic reactions to insect stings, she said.

Staishy Bostick Siem | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.utsouthwestern.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Minimising risks of transplants
22.02.2018 | Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg

nachricht FAU researchers demonstrate that an oxygen sensor in the body reduces inflammation
22.02.2018 | Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Developing reliable quantum computers

International research team makes important step on the path to solving certification problems

Quantum computers may one day solve algorithmic problems which even the biggest supercomputers today can’t manage. But how do you test a quantum computer to...

Im Focus: In best circles: First integrated circuit from self-assembled polymer

For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.

In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...

Im Focus: Demonstration of a single molecule piezoelectric effect

Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale

Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...

Im Focus: Hybrid optics bring color imaging using ultrathin metalenses into focus

For photographers and scientists, lenses are lifesavers. They reflect and refract light, making possible the imaging systems that drive discovery through the microscope and preserve history through cameras.

But today's glass-based lenses are bulky and resist miniaturization. Next-generation technologies, such as ultrathin cameras or tiny microscopes, require...

Im Focus: Stem cell divisions in the adult brain seen for the first time

Scientists from the University of Zurich have succeeded for the first time in tracking individual stem cells and their neuronal progeny over months within the intact adult brain. This study sheds light on how new neurons are produced throughout life.

The generation of new nerve cells was once thought to taper off at the end of embryonic development. However, recent research has shown that the adult brain...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

2nd International Conference on High Temperature Shape Memory Alloys (HTSMAs)

15.02.2018 | Event News

Aachen DC Grid Summit 2018

13.02.2018 | Event News

How Global Climate Policy Can Learn from the Energy Transition

12.02.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Stiffness matters

22.02.2018 | Life Sciences

Magnetic field traces gas and dust swirling around supermassive black hole

22.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

First evidence of surprising ocean warming around Galápagos corals

22.02.2018 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>