NORWALK OFFICE WILL BE CLOSED ON THE FOLLOWING DAYS:
MONDAY – 4/15/19
NORWALK OFFICE WILL BE CLOSED ON THE FOLLOWING DAYS:
MONDAY – 4/15/19
Spring is in the air and that means pollen, mold spores and other airborne allergens are going to bring on sneezing and wheezing for an estimated 50 million Americans.
The spring season can be especially bothersome with so much conflicting information on how to find relief. To help you better understand spring allergies and combat symptoms this sneezing season, the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI), has answered some of the most frequently asked questions.
1. Why does it seem like more and more people have spring allergies?This is likely due to increased awareness and more people taking the steps to being properly tested and diagnosed. According to a recent study published in the Annals of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, pollen counts are gradually increasing every year, which can cause heightened symptoms.
2. Do spring allergy symptoms only last during the spring months?The length of the season can help determine the severity of symptoms. For many areas of the country, spring allergies begin in February and last until the early summer. Mild winter temperatures can cause plants to pollenate early. A rainy spring can also promote rapid plant growth and lead to an increase in mold, causing symptoms to last well into the fall months. Allergists recommend starting medications to alleviate symptoms two weeks before they begin. If you have a history of prior seasonal problems, start your medication at the first sign of any symptoms.
3. Will eating local honey cure allergies?A common myth is that eating a spoonful of local honey a day can build allergy immunity. The idea is that bees pick up pollen spores from flowers, transfer them to their honey and help you better tolerate pollen. Seasonal allergies are usually triggered by windborne pollen, not pollen spread by insects. There is no scientific evidence that honey will provide any benefit or reduce allergy symptoms. Your best bet? Talk to your allergist about ways to avoid allergy triggers, the best medications to treat symptoms and whether immunotherapy (allergy shots) could be beneficial.
4. Is there such a thing as spring asthma?Allergies and asthma are often worse during different times of the year due to environmental allergens. An estimated 75 to 85 percent of asthma patients have allergies. These allergic responses in the lung can lead to symptoms of asthma. If you have spring allergies, this can be why you have more asthma symptoms during the season. Those that believe they may have symptoms of nasal allergy or asthma can find a free screening program in their area by visiting www.acaai.org/nasp.
5. Can you suddenly develop seasonal allergies in adulthood?Yes. Although allergies are common in children, they can occur at any time and any age. Sometimes allergies go away, but they also can come back years later. If you suspect you have an allergy, you should keep track of your symptoms with MyNasalAllergyJournal.org and see an allergist to find relief.
By understanding what allergens trigger your symptoms and how to avoid them, you can find relief from spring allergies this season, says Dr. Richard Weber, an allergist and ACAAI president. An allergist can help you find the source of your suffering and stop it, not just treat the symptoms.
Allergies and asthma are serious diseases during every season of the year and that s nothing to sneeze at. Misdiagnosis and inappropriate treatment can be dangerous.
Looking out the window and seeing snow fall, allergies may be out of sight and out of mind. However, in the Northeastern United States trees will start to bloom in about two months. For those of us allergic to tree pollen this can be a difficult time. Runny nose, sneezing and itchy eyes are more than a nuisance. Before you suffer, miss work or school, make a plan to beat spring allergies.
Step 1. Find out what you are allergic to. Different plants pollinate at different times. For example, birch trees pollinate early in the spring, as soon as mid-March. Grass pollens tend to peak later on, in the early summer.
Step 2. Track pollen counts and do your best to avoid pollen. Here are some tips:
Step 3. Start medications early. It is best to get ahead of your symptoms. As the season goes on, your body becomes more sensitive to pollen. This makes it harder to treat.
Step 4. Know your options. Allergy treatments can help reduce symptoms when taken daily (pills, sprays). Other treatments (drops, shots) can help lessen your allergies over time, giving you long lasting improvement and less need for medication.
See your allergist now, before it is too late.
Everyday in our office, we see people suffering with hives. They want to find out what is causing the hives and how to get rid of them. Sometimes the cause is obvious (i.e. a peanut two minutes before the outbreak) but more often there is no answer. The hives are random with no consistent trigger. These people are often diagnosed with Chronic Idiopathic Urticaria (CIU).
Chronic = lasting more than six weeks
Idiopathic = unexplained, spontaneous, random
Urticaria = hives: itchy, red or skin colored welts
Interesting articles from 2017 – SEARCH OF GOOGLE SCHOLAR
Food allergies are challenging. The risk and fear of allergic reactions make life hard for children and parents. Unfortunately, food allergies are becoming more common and taking longer to outgrow. Oral Immunotherapy (OIT) is a new option that may help to keep your child safe while reducing anxiety, allowing your child to eat out or attend school with less worry.
OIT involves retraining the immune system to tolerate the allergic food (i.e. peanut or milk). This is done by feeding the food allergic person small amounts of the food. The amount increases slowly over time. As the dose goes up, so does the level of protection.
Working as a Nurse Practioner at the food allergy institute of Mount Sinai in NYC, allowed me to gain valuable experience and insights regarding OIT. Historically, food allergy treatment included strict avoidance and carrying emergency medications. That was it, do your best and wait. OIT is a novel option. Studies have shown OIT reduces allergic reactions from cross contamination and increase quality of life.
As the treatment is still new, there are uncertainties. It is currently unknown if OIT leads to long term tolerance and a ‘cure’ for food allergy. Or is the benefit only temporary. Optimal dosing protocols are still being worked out. Also, it is not clear which patients would benefit from addition of adjuvants, like Xolair or probiotics.
OIT can be a great option for some patients. It should only be done in an office that has the training and staff to safely navigate them through the process. The undertaking can be difficult and time consuming and there can be side effects. Despite the unknowns and risks, OIT can have a huge impact on reducing food allergy reactions and increasing quality of life. It can be a great option for families to be less afraid of cross contaminations and to gain the possibility of eventually outgrowing their allergy.
OIT has great potential and I am excited and hopeful to see further success.
Elizabeth (Beth) Strong is a board certified Family Nurse Practitioner. She completed her Bachelor of Science in Nursing at SUNY Buffalo and went on to earn her Masters of Science in Nursing at the University of Rochester. Beth learned world-class allergy care while working closely with and training under top researchers and experts. For the past eleven years, she worked through the Jaffe Food Allergy Institute at Mount Sinai in NYC. She treated patients with food allergies, eczema, seasonal allergies and asthma. She managed several clinical trials studying immunotherapies for food allergy and was highly integral in opening the Food Allergy Treatment and Research Center to treat food allergic patients with an advanced oral desensitization protocol. In her free time, Beth enjoys being outdoors and traveling. Most of all, she loves spending time with her husband and two young children.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is alerting consumers to Meridian Medical Technologies’ voluntary recall of 13 lots of Mylan’s EpiPen and EpiPen Jr (epinephrine injection) Auto-Injector products used for emergency treatment of severe allergic reactions. This recall is due to the potential that these devices may contain a defective part that may result in the devices’ failure to activate. The recalled product was manufactured by Meridian Medical Technologies and distributed by Mylan Specialty.
While the number of reported failures is small, EpiPen products that potentially contain a defective part are being recalled because of the potential for life-threatening risk if a severe allergic reaction goes untreated. Consumers should keep and use their current EpiPens if needed until they get a replacement. Consumers should contact Mylan at 800-796-9526 or firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
As stated on the product label, consumers should always seek emergency medical help right away after using their EpiPens, particularly if the device did not activate.
At this time, the 13 lots identified – distributed between Dec. 17, 2015, and July 1, 2016 – are the only EpiPen lots impacted by the U.S. recall. Consumers who have EpiPens from lots that are not included in this recall, do not need to replace their EpiPen prior to its expiration date.
|Product/Dosage||NDC Number||Lot Number||Expiration Date|
|EpiPen Jr Auto-Injector, 0.15 mg||49502-501-02||5GN767||April 2017|
|EpiPen Jr Auto-Injector, 0.15 mg||49502-501-02||5GN773||April 2017|
|EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg||49502-500-02||5GM631||April 2017|
|EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg||49502-500-02||5GM640||April 2017|
|EpiPen Jr Auto-Injector, 0.15 mg||49502-501-02||6GN215||September 2017|
|EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg||49502-500-02||6GM082||September 2017|
|EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg||49502-500-02||6GM072||September 2017|
|EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg||49502-500-02||6GM081||September 2017|
|EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg||49502-500-02||6GM088||October 2017|
|EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg||49502-500-02||6GM199||October 2017|
|EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg||49502-500-02||6GM091||October 2017|
|EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg||49502-500-02||6GM198||October 2017|
|EpiPen Auto-Injector, 0.3 mg||49502-500-02||6GM087||October 2017|
The FDA asks health care professionals and consumers to report any adverse reactions or device malfunctions to the FDA’s MedWatch program, by:
The FDA, an agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, protects the public health by assuring the safety, effectiveness, and security of human and veterinary drugs, vaccines and other biological products for human use, and medical devices. The agency also is responsible for the safety and security of our nation’s food supply, cosmetics, dietary supplements, products that give off electronic radiation, and for regulating tobacco products.
“Sanofi and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Inc. announced today that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Dupixent® (dupilumab) Injection, the first and only biologic medicine approved for the treatment of adults with moderate-to-severe atopic dermatitis (AD) whose disease is not adequately controlled with topical prescription therapies, or when those therapies are not advisable.”
After much anticipation, dupilumab becomes the first biologic approved for the treatment of atopic dermatitis (a form of eczema). Dupilumab is indicated for adults with moderate to severe eczema that are not well controlled with steroid creams or ointments. The current options for these patients are limited. Most often oral immunosuppressants, like prednisone or cyclosporine, are used. These medications may have several adverse effects. Dupilumab is a biologic that aims to more specifically target the underlying factors driving allergic inflammation. In this case it blocks the signals of two molecules, Il-4 and IL-13.
Approval was based on three studies. The results of these studies showed the medication to be effective for the majority of patients. Additionally, 36-38% of patients achieved clear to almost clear skin.
Dupilumab will come in a pre-filled syringe for self-administration, to be given by subcutaneous injection every other week. A loading dose in your physician’s office may be required.
The wholesale cost was reported $37,000 per year. However, the actual cost to patients is still unknown.
Future directions. Two studies are currently testing safety and effectiveness in children, 6 months to 11 years and 12 to 17 years of age. Other uses under investigation include asthma, nasal polyps and eosinophilic esophagitis.
If you do have atopic dermatitis that is not well controlled, speak to your allergy doctor to see if dupilumab is right for you.