Oral food challenge outcomes in a pediatric tertiary care center
Abrams, Elissa M
Becker, Allan B
MetadataShow full item record
Abstract Background Oral food challenges are the clinical standard for diagnosis of food allergy. Little data exist on predictors of oral challenge failure and reaction severity. Methods A retrospective chart review was done on all pediatric patients who had oral food challenges in a tertiary care pediatric allergy clinic from 2008 to 2010. Results 313 oral challenges were performed, of which the majority were to peanut (105), egg (71), milk (41) and tree nuts (29). There were 104 (33%) oral challenge failures. Children were more likely to fail an oral challenge if they were older (P = .04), had asthma (P = .001) or had atopic dermatitis (P = .03). Risk of challenge failure was significantly different between food allergens, with more failures noted for peanut than for tree nuts, milk or egg (P = .001). Among challenge failures, 19% met criteria for anaphylaxis. Significantly more tree nut and peanut challenges met criteria for anaphylaxis than milk or egg (P < .001). Skin test size and specific IgE level were significantly higher in those who failed oral challenges (P < .001). The highest rate of challenge failure and severity of failure was to cashew, with 63% of cashew challenges reacting, of which 80% met clinical criteria for anaphylaxis. Conclusion The risk of challenge failure differed with type of food studied, with peanut and tree nut having a higher risk of challenge failure and anaphylaxis. Cashew in particular carried a high risk and caution must be exercised when performing these types of oral challenges in children.