New research investigating the emotional impact of living with a peanut allergy has empathised the importance of exploring potential treatments.
The study entitled Exploring Health-Related Quality of Life Burden in Peanut Allergy and the Potential Benefit of Oral Immunotherapy: Estimation of Health State Utility Values for Children and Adolescents and Their Caregivers highlighted the detrimental impact living with a peanut allergy can have on both the person with the allergy and their parent or caregiver. Data collected from over 150 families showed that the fear of life-threatening reactions can have a negative impact on a child’s health-related quality of life, including their mental and physical wellbeing. Peanut avoidance can cause emotional issues such as anxiety and stress, feelings of frustration and isolation, and experiencing restrictions on activities, including socialising, and travelling.
People diagnosed with peanut allergy are advised to avoid their allergen, but even with strict avoidance, accidental exposure can occur. The study developed by the Anaphylaxis Campaign, Aimmune Therapeutics, Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust and Acaster Lloyd Consulting LTD, not only showed the burden that peanut allergy creates but also how treatments such as oral immunotherapy (OIT) can alleviate these concerns. OIT works by desensitising the patient to their allergen by giving them small quantities of that food overtime.
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