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Korean J Pediatr. 2012 May;55(5):153-8. doi: 10.3345/kjp.2012.55.5.153. Epub 2012 May 21.

Food allergy.

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1
Department of Pediatrics, Samsung Medical Center, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.

Abstract

Food allergy is an important public health problem affecting 5% of infants and children in Korea. Food allergy is defined as an immune response triggered by food proteins. Food allergy is highly associated with atopic dermatitis and is one of the most common triggers of potentially fatal anaphylaxis in the community. Sensitization to food allergens can occur in the gastrointestinal tract (class 1 food allergy) or as a consequence of cross reactivity to structurally homologous inhalant allergens (class 2 food allergy). Allergenicity of food is largely determined by structural aspects, including cross-reactivity and reduced or enhanced allergenicity with cooking that convey allergenic characteristics to food. Management of food allergy currently focuses on dietary avoidance of the offending foods, prompt recognition and treatment of allergic reactions, and nutritional support. This review includes definitions and examines the prevalence and management of food allergies and the characteristics of food allergens.

KEYWORDS:

Allergens; Cross reactions; Disease management; Food allergy

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