Peanut allergy can be successfully treated so that you or your child will be able to eat peanut, and not have an allergic reaction.
Over the past few years, patients of every age, 8 months to adult, have been successfully desensitized to peanut. This is done by a technique in which peanut protein is administered, under tight medical supervision, to train a patient’s immune system to tolerate peanut. This treatment is known as oral immunotherapy, or OIT.
With peanut OIT, there are two possible outcomes, both of which are beneficial compared to peanut avoidance:
- Peanut desensitization: As long as the patient is taking daily oral doses of the peanut allergen, he or she will not have allergic reactions to peanuts. All of our patients have reached the goal of peanut desensitization.
- Peanut tolerance: When a patient has reached the goal of peanut tolerance they do not have to eat peanuts daily and they are still able to eat peanuts without having a peanut allergy reaction. This outcome is more difficult to achieve but the long-term benefits make it a more desirable outcome.
After eating the peanut allergen for several years, enough time to cause profound changes in the immune system, we will check to see if you have reached this stage of peanut tolerance. To check on this we would stop you daily peanut allergen consumption and challenge you with a dose of peanut under medical supervision.
If you would like to learn more about peanut allergy treatments or OIT, please contact us for an appointment.