Send to

Choose Destination
Allergy Asthma Clin Immunol. 2016 Aug 17;12:41. doi: 10.1186/s13223-016-0148-7. eCollection 2016.

Antibiotic prescription and food allergy in young children.

Author information

Department of Clinical Pharmacy and Outcomes Sciences, South Carolina College of Pharmacy, The University of South Carolina, 715 Sumter St., CLS 314D, Columbia, SC 29208 USA.
Department of Preventive Medicine, The University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson, MS USA.
Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Institute for Families in Society, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC USA.
Department of Internal Medicine; Division of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, University of South Carolina School of Medicine, Columbia, SC USA.



To assess the relationship between any systemic antibiotic prescription within the first year of life and the presence of an ICD-9-CM diagnosis code for food allergy (FA).


This was a matched case-control study conducted using South Carolina Medicaid administrative data. FA cases born between 2007 and 2009 were matched to controls without FA on birth month/year, sex, race/ethnicity. Conditional logistic regression was used to model the adjusted odds ratio (aOR) of FA diagnosis. All models were adjusted for presence of asthma, wheeze, or atopic dermatitis.


A total of 1504 cases and 5995 controls were identified. Receipt of an antibiotic prescription within the initial 12 months of life was associated with FA diagnosis in unadjusted and adjusted models (aOR 1.21; 95 % CI 1.06-1.39). Compared to children with no antibiotic prescriptions, a linear increase in the aOR was seen with increasing antibiotic prescriptions. Children receiving five or more (aOR 1.64; 95 % CI 1.31-2.05) antibiotic prescriptions were significantly associated with FA diagnosis. The strongest association was noted among recipients of cephalosporin and sulfonamide antibiotics in both unadjusted and adjusted models.


Receipt of antibiotic prescription in the first year of life is associated with FA diagnosis code in young children after controlling for common covariates. Multiple antibiotic prescriptions are more strongly associated with increases in the odds of FA diagnosis.


Allergy; Antibiotics; Children; Food allergy; Health services research

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for BioMed Central Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center