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J Investig Allergol Clin Immunol. 1998 Sep-Oct;8(5):271-6.

Atopic dermatitis and food allergy.

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  • 1Department of Allergology and Clinical Immunology, University Clinic, Faculty of Medicine, University of Navarra, Pamplona, Spain.


In order to determine the importance of food sensitization in the etiopathogenesis of atopic dermatitis, we performed a study on 74 patients who fulfilled a previously suggested diagnosis criteria. Of these patients, 17.5% presented allergic rhinitis and 62.2% had associated bronchial asthma. We found that in 64.9% of the patients there was a food sensitization, with milk (36.5%), egg (35.1%) and fish (21.6%) being the most frequently involved. We also observed that 34% of the patients were sensitized to Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus and 24.3% to pollen. These sensitizations were confirmed by means of skin tests, specific IgE and antigen-specific histamine release test. The patients underwent a 3-year follow-up in order to find out the clinical evolution once the causal food was avoided and/or a symptomatic treatment was prescribed. The group of patients with no food sensitization was significantly different from the group with food sensitization: in the first group only 20% of the patients presented a very good clinical evolution (asymptomatic), while in the second group, in 71.4% of the patients the symptoms completely stopped. Nevertheless, in the first year follow-up, we found no significant differences between the two groups. In conclusion, a diet avoiding the causal food combined with a suitable symptomatic treatment, led to an important remission of the skin manifestations in children diagnosed with atopic dermatitis.

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