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Health Team

Study shows many kids outgrow egg allergy

Posted November 9, 2012

Fourteen-year-old Arianna Cooper has food allergies and has to watch every bite she eats.

“You always have to be careful and aware of everything around you,” she said.

Her mom knows the dangers well. Arianna had a bad reaction to eggs when she was 5 years old.

“Arianna started to cough a lot, to wheeze and get some hives, and she threw up,” Shari Cooper said.

But Arianna eventually outgrew her allergy - and that's not uncommon.

New research being presented at an American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology meeting shows 55 percent of children will outgrow egg allergies by age 7.

“Allergies seem to be on the rise, and children aren't outgrowing them as quickly as they used to,” said Dr. Scott Sicherer of the Jaffe Food Allergy Institute at Mount Sinai Medical Center. “We used to say that 80 or 90 percent of kids would outgrow their egg allergy by the time they were 3.”

A second study is good news for kids who don't outgrow their allergies. It finds that 56 percent of allergic kids are able to eat eggs in baked products such as cakes and breads.

Baking “changes the proteins in a way that for some people with egg allergy they are able to have it,” Sicherer said.

Doctors warn parents not to experiment at home.

Instead, they should speak to an allergist about which foods are safe for their child.

Arianna still copes with allergies to peanuts and treenuts but is relieved she can finally eat eggs. It means she’s able to eat many things she couldn’t before.

“I just felt a little more free because I wouldn’t have to worry as much about having an egg allergy because eggs are in so many things,” she said.

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