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Peanut immunotherapy increases allergic and anaphylactic reactions, finds review

BMJ 2019; 365 doi: (Published 25 April 2019) Cite this as: BMJ 2019;365:l1912
  1. Susan Mayor
  1. London, UK

Oral immunotherapy for peanut allergy, in which patients are exposed to gradually increasing doses of allergen over time, increases the risk of allergic and anaphylactic reactions despite inducing desensitisation, a review has found.1

“Our study synthesises all randomised clinical trials comparing peanut oral immunotherapy with no immunotherapy,” said lead author Derek Chu, from McMaster University, Hamilton, Canada.

“It shows that current peanut oral immunotherapy regimens can achieve the immunological goal of desensitisation, but that this outcome does not translate into less allergic reactions and anaphylaxis over time. Instead, the opposite occurs, with more allergic and adverse reactions with oral immunotherapy compared with avoidance or placebo.”

Peanut allergy is common, affecting 2% of children and 1% of adults in high income countries, …

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