Editor’s Note - May 2015
According to the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America, 1 in 5 people in the United States have either an allergy or asthma symptom.
Approximately 55% of Americans test positive to 1 or more allergens, which ranks allergies as the fifth leading chronic disease in the country.
The economic impact of allergies in healthcare expenses and lost wages: a whopping $7.9 billion.1,2
When it comes to asthma, the CDC reports that there are 18.7 million noninstitutionalized adults who suffer from the respiratory condition. This translates to 14.2 million visits to the primary care physician’s office and 1.3 million visits to hospital outpatient departments where asthma was the primary diagnosis. In 2013, 3630 deaths were attributed to asthma.3
Primary care practitioners are often the first stop for allergy and asthma sufferers. In honor of National Allergy and Asthma Month, Consultant360 has highlighted several recent studies:
• New blood test to detect food allergies. Researchers are determining whether basophil activation test results can correlate with controlled food challenges to predict the severity of an allergic reaction.4
• Patch effectively treats peanut allergy. A multinational, double-blind, placebocontrolled study found a peanut patch to be a highly effective new treatment for
individuals who suffer from peanut allergies.5
• Cannabis allergy underreported despite widespread use. Cannabis, like other pollen-bearing plants, can cause allergic reactions ranging from allergic rhinitis to anaphylaxis.6
• Smokers who vape are less likely to quit smoking. A new study finds that the e-cigarettes may hinder rather than help smoking cessation.7
• Role of calcium sensing receptors (CaSR) in asthma studied. CaSR activation, caused by the release of chemicals with environmental triggers, induced inflammation, narrowing, and twitchiness with airway tissue.8
Managing Editor, Consultant and Consultant360
1. Allergy Statistics and Facts. WebMD. www.webmd.com/allergies/allergy-statistics. Accessed May 4, 2015.
2. Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. Allergy facts and figures. www.aafa.org/display.cfm?id=9&sub=30. Accessed May 4, 2015.
3. CDC. Asthma. February 6, 2015. www.cdc.gov/nchs/fastats/asthma.htm. Accessed May 4, 2015.
4. McGraw M. Could new blood test replace invasive allergy testing? Consultant360. April 10, 2015. www.consultant360.com/exclusives/could-new-blood-test-replace-invasive-allergy-testing. Accessed May 4, 2015.
5. Butcher MC. Breakthrough patch effectively treats peanut allergy. Consultant360. March 20, 2015. www.consultant360.com/exclusives/break-through-patch-effectively-treats-peanut-allergy. Accessed May 4, 2015.
6. Potts M. Study: Cannabis allergy underreported despite widespread use. Consultant360. March 10, 2015. www.consultant360.com/exclusives/study-cannabis-allergy-underreported-despite-widespread-use. Accessed May 4, 2015.
7. Mullarkey C. Smokers who vape are less likely to quit smoking. Consultant360. April 20, 2015. www.consultant360.com/exclusives/smokers-who-vape-are-less-likely-quit-smoking. Accessed May 4, 2015.
8. Butcher MC. Study: Breakthrough asthma treatment discovered. Consultant360. April 24, 2015. www.consultant360.com/exclusives/study-breakthrough-asthma-treatment-discovered. Accessed May 4, 2015.