The Role of Partially Hydrolyzed Whey Formula for the Prevention of Allergic Disease

Evidence and Gaps

Adrian J Lowe; Shyamali C Dharmage; Katrina J Allen; Mimi LK Tang; David J Hill


Expert Rev Clin Immunol. 2013;9(1):31-41. 

In This Article

Current Recommendations

A range of health organizations have made recommendations or comments concerning the use of pHWF specifically, or hydrolyzed formula in general, for the prevention of allergic disease. It should be noted that these recommendations are all limited to children who are potentially at a higher risk of allergic disease due to a family history of these conditions in a first-degree relative. These recommendations are summarized in Table 1.

As seen from Table 1, the recommendations from these various organizations are currently quite similar. It should be noted that there has been a shift away from very slow and restrictive introduction of foods into the infant diet that was advocated in the past[17] towards the current more liberal set of advice. These scientific organizations have recommended the use of hydrolyzed formula in the first 4–6 months of life, in high-risk children, for the prevention of allergic disease based on a limited number of trials. The majority of these organizations acknowledge the limited evidence supporting the efficacy of hydrolyzed formula for the prevention of allergic disease. Some organizations also make specific statements concerning pHWF. Since publication of these recommendations and statements, recently published evidence[18] has shown that it is required that these statements and recommendations be updated.