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Alice is a 7-year-old girl who has experienced digestive problems, specifically vomiting and hives after she drank milk or ate yogurt. As a result, her parents switched her to soy milk and removed all other milk products from her diet. Alice’s healthcare professional decided to test Alice for a milk allergy and gain some clarity around her reactions.
The results of an ImmunoCAPTM Whole Allergen test showed positive results to milk, but that’s not the whole story. Additional ImmunoCAP Allergen Components testing showed positive results to casein, a protein in milk that is associated with a high risk of systemic reaction to milk in all forms.1-3 Because of this and her history of reaction, Alice is unlikely to grow out of her milk allergy. She should continue to avoid all foods with milk and baked milk products (yogurt, cookies, cakes), as well as avoid foods processed with milk, like chocolate, sausage or potato chips.4,5
Many people are so used to living with their allergies that they never think that they should have their healthcare professional reassess their allergy. Just because you know what you were allergic to a year ago doesn’t mean you know everything you’re allergic to today. Since some allergies can resolve themselves—like milk—retesting can play an important role in your quality of life or the life of someone you love, by reducing unnecessary food avoidance and the fear of an adverse reaction.6 Be sure to consult with your healthcare professional.
The people, places and events depicted in these photographs do not represent actual patients, nor are they affiliated in any way with the attached case study or Thermo Fisher Scientific.
1. Nowak-Wegrzyn A, Bloom KA, Sicherer SH, et al. Tolerance to extensively heated milk in children with cow’s milk allergy. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2008;122(2):342-347.
2. Shek LP, Bardina L, Castro R, et al. Humoral and cellular responses to cow milk proteins in patients with milk-induced IgE-mediated and non-IgE-mediated disorders. Allergy. 2005;60(7):912-919.
3. Boyano-Martínez T, García-Ara C, Pedrosa M, et al. Accidental allergic reactions in children allergic to cow’s milk proteins. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2009;123(4):883-888.
4. Sicherer SH, Sampson HA. Cow’s milk protein-specific IgE concentrations in two age groups of milk-allergic children and in children achieving clinical tolerance. Clin Exp Allergy. 1999;29(4):507-512.
5. Yman. Allergic reactions to casein/doses. http://www.slv.se/upload/dokument/risker/allergi/Allergic_reactions_milk.pdf. Accessed May 8, 2013.
6. American College of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology. http://acaai.org/resources/connect/ask-allergist/Allergy-Testing. Accessed October 2017.