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Peanut allergies have received much attention in recent years. They affect approximately 400,000 school-aged children in the United States. Dr. Nora Lin, M.D., a clinical assistant professor at Drexel University and a private physician at Allergy & Asthma SpecialistsSM, explains: “Although peanuts are not the most common of food allergies, they get more attention because reactions tend to be more severe.”

Allergy & Asthma SpecialistsSM is committed to extraordinary care in the area of food allergy and unique is specializing in high-risk food challenges and innovative techniques for the treatment of food allergies, including peanut-allergy desensitization.

The most common symptoms of peanut allergies are stomach pain (including nausea, vomiting and stomach cramping), a skin reaction (such as an itchy rash or hives), coughing, difficulty breathing, and—the most severe—closing of the throat, aka anaphylaxis. Access to an epinephrine auto-injector is a caretaker’s best option in case of an emergency.

Since peanuts are commonly used in the manufacturing of many foods and can be a hidden ingredient, caretakers, teachers, daycare workers and parents worry most about an accidental exposure to peanuts, causing a serious, life-threatening reaction. It is also very stressful for the child.

Allergy & Asthma SpecialistsSM is the only allergy practice in the area offering peanut-allergy desensitization. This treatment is done with highly controlled amounts of peanut extract placed under the tongue in a controlled medical environment. The extract is called peanut sublingual immunotherapy, or peanut SLIT. Over a number of months, increasing doses of peanut extract are placed under the patient’s tongue. This gradual administration of peanut helps the patient’s immune system build up his or her own natural immunity, making the patient less allergic.

Peanut SLIT is not a cure, but it does reduce worry. While not a cure, the effect is life-altering, as it may mean the difference between tolerating an accidental ingestion and having a life-threatening anaphylactic reaction.

The fellowship-trained, board-certified allergists of Allergy & Asthma SpecialistsSM are the area’s experts at providing peanut SLIT. Go to AllergyandAsthmaWellness.com for more information, or call (800) 86-COUGH, option 5, to speak with a nurse about peanut SLIT. If you think you or your child suffers from a peanut allergy, call (800) 86-COUGH, option 2, to schedule a consultation.

Allergy & Asthma SpecialistsSM is a group practice with eight locations in Philadelphia and the surrounding suburbs. It provides state-of-the-art medical care in a personal and caring environment, emphasizing the control of asthma and allergic disease, while avoiding side effects from medications.

Allergy & Asthma SpecialistsSM

Locations: Blue Bell, King of Prussia, Collegeville, Pottstown, Philadelphia, Jenkintown, Lansdale and Doylestown
Office hours: 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday. Evening appointments are available weekly on alternating days.
Toll-free: (800) 86-COUGH
Local: (610) 825-5800
Website: AllergyandAsthmaWellness.com