Kirsi M. Järvinen


Curr Opin Allergy Clin Immunol. 2011;11(3):255-261. 

In This Article

How Common is Food-induced Anaphylaxis?

Anaphylaxis has been recently defined by an expert panel as 'a serious allergic reaction that is rapid in onset and may cause death'.[1] Food-induced anaphylaxis is the leading single cause of anaphylaxis treated in emergency departments (EDs) in the USA, especially in childhood.[2–4] Food allergy is an increasing problem in westernized countries around the world, with a cumulative prevalence of 3–6%.[5•] On the basis of the study by Yocum et al.,[6] it has been estimated that there are close to 30 000 food-induced anaphylactic reactions treated in EDs and 150–200 deaths in the United States each year.[3] Extrapolations from a recent ED data from The National Electronic Injury Surveillance System (NEISS) predict about 14 000 ED visits annually.[7] The latest estimations using data from two large ED-based cohort studies and the National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey (NHAMCS) suggest nearly 90 000 ED visits for anaphylaxis annually.[8] Food-related anaphylaxis and admissions increased in the UK (1990–2004) and in Australia (1993–2003).[9,10] However, food-induced anaphylaxis mortality rates, based on death certificates, were recently shown to remain stable between 2000 and 2009 in Australia.[11•]


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