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 New discoveries predict ability to forecast dementia from single molecule
12.12.2018 | UT Southwestern Medical Center

nachricht Pain: Perception and motor impulses arise in the brain independently of one another
12.12.2018 | Technische Universität München

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: Lethal combination: Drug cocktail turns off the juice to cancer cells

A widely used diabetes medication combined with an antihypertensive drug specifically inhibits tumor growth – this was discovered by researchers from the University of Basel’s Biozentrum two years ago. In a follow-up study, recently published in “Cell Reports”, the scientists report that this drug cocktail induces cancer cell death by switching off their energy supply.

The widely used anti-diabetes drug metformin not only reduces blood sugar but also has an anti-cancer effect. However, the metformin dose commonly used in the...

Im Focus: New Foldable Drone Flies through Narrow Holes in Rescue Missions

A research team from the University of Zurich has developed a new drone that can retract its propeller arms in flight and make itself small to fit through narrow gaps and holes. This is particularly useful when searching for victims of natural disasters.

Inspecting a damaged building after an earthquake or during a fire is exactly the kind of job that human rescuers would like drones to do for them. A flying...

Im Focus: Topological material switched off and on for the first time

Key advance for future topological transistors

Over the last decade, there has been much excitement about the discovery, recognised by the Nobel Prize in Physics only two years ago, that there are two types...

Im Focus: Researchers develop method to transfer entire 2D circuits to any smooth surface

What if a sensor sensing a thing could be part of the thing itself? Rice University engineers believe they have a two-dimensional solution to do just that.

Rice engineers led by materials scientists Pulickel Ajayan and Jun Lou have developed a method to make atom-flat sensors that seamlessly integrate with devices...

Im Focus: Three components on one chip

Scientists at the University of Stuttgart and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) succeed in important further development on the way to quantum Computers.

Quantum computers one day should be able to solve certain computing problems much faster than a classical computer. One of the most promising approaches is...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

ICTM Conference 2019: Digitization emerges as an engineering trend for turbomachinery construction

12.12.2018 | Event News

New Plastics Economy Investor Forum - Meeting Point for Innovations

10.12.2018 | Event News

EGU 2019 meeting: Media registration now open

06.12.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

New discoveries predict ability to forecast dementia from single molecule

12.12.2018 | Health and Medicine

CCNY-Yale researchers make shape shifting cell breakthrough

12.12.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

Pain: Perception and motor impulses arise in the brain independently of one another

12.12.2018 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>