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Pediatr Allergy Immunol. 2015 Jun;26(4):323-9. doi: 10.1111/pai.12389.

Allergy-test-driven elimination diet is useful in children with eosinophilic esophagitis, regardless of the severity of symptoms.

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Allergy Department, 'Sotiria' General Hospital, Athens, Greece.
First Department of Paediatrics, University of Athens, Athens, Greece.
Dept of Nutrition and Dietetics, Harokopio University, Athens, Greece.



A combination of PPIs and corticosteroids is the pharmacotherapy mostly used to treat eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE), while dietetic manipulations consist also an efficient option. The aim of this study was to compare the efficacy of allergy-test-driven elimination diet in children with mild symptoms of EoE to a group of children with moderate/severe symptoms.


Thirty-five children, aged 7 months to 12 yr, with EoE were enrolled in the study. They had a clinical history of GERD-like (21 children, Group A) or more severe symptoms (14 children, Group B). The diagnosis had been confirmed after two preliminary months of therapy with PPIs and an esophagogastroduodenoscopy. Soon after diagnosis, they were allergy-tested, using IgE detection (SPT and serum-specific IgE) and atopy patch tests (APTs). A 12-month tailor-made diet was prescribed according to the tests. Patients of Group B continued PPIs for two more months, while swallowed topical steroids were also prescribed to them for the first 5 months after diagnosis, followed by an 'as-needed' use of them for the rest of the study. Endoscopy was repeated at the end of the study.


Milk and egg were the most common APT-positive allergens. Thirty-two patients were instructed to follow an elimination diet, which was completed by 15/18 of Group A and 12/14 of Group B. An improvement of symptoms was reported by 26/27 patients that completed the study. The use of swallowed corticosteroids was noticeably decreased during the as-needed period, in Group B. A remarkable reduce of eosinophils was noticed in biopsies; from 42.84 ± 18.08, they decreased to 6.41 ± 3.20, a year after.


All children with EoE and mild symptoms had resolution of symptoms and normal eosinophils in the esophageal mucosa a year after an allergy-driven elimination diet. Patients with moderate/severe EoE symptoms had the same improvement, indicating that an elimination diet is an efficient complementary treatment to corticosteroids.


elimination diet; eosinophilic esophagitis; gastroesophageal reflux disease; skin testing

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