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Title: Immunoglobulin E -Mediated Food Allergies and the Associated Nutritional Factors among Children at the Pediatric Allergy Clinics in Kuwait
Authors: Munirah Jamal Al-Beajan 
Supervisor: Prof. Jiwan S. Sidhu
Keywords: Food allergy : Vitamin D deficiency
Issue Date: 2017
Publisher:  Kuwait university - college of graduate studies
Abstract: Food Allergy (FA) may play an important role in atopic diseases, such as eczema and asthma, in selected populations; however, its prevalence in children is still not established in Kuwait. Many nutritional factors have been implicated in the development of food allergy; including early infancy feeding practices and vitamin D deficiency. We aimed in this investigation to assess the incidence proportion of newly diagnosed patients with immunoglobulin E (IgE)-mediated food allergy in the Pediatric Allergy Clinics in Kuwait, and to investigate the FA associated nutritional factors; including: (a) the nutritional status, (b) breastfeeding and its duration, (c) the age of first solid food introduction, (d) current child vitamin D status; and (e) and antibiotics exposure in the first year of life. Method: The study consisted of two parts: a cross-sectional, whereby we verified FA diagnosis of 433 children seen at major allergy and immunology clinics, located at the major hospitals in Kuwait (Aug-Dec 2015), and a chart-review and a case-controlled study were conducted (Aug-Feb 2016) from a sample children who were seen consecutively at the pediatric allergy and immunology clinics. Ethical approval was obtained from Ministry of Health and informed consent forms were obtained from all the parents of participating children. We managed to recruit a total n=132 parent-child dyads, children age range 0-13 years (67% boys, median age 31 months), whom were asked to complete a survey tool designed to collect information on the child allergies and associated factors. The healthy control group n=100 was recruited from various vaccination units at the primary health care centers (55% boys, median age 12 months). Results: The proportion of physician confirmed FA among the study sample of participating children at the allergy clinics was 75.8% (n=100). The incidence proportion of the newly diagnosed FA cases obtained from case referral registry in all locations for the study period was 14.4% (n=433). Cow milk allergy was the most common type of FA, and was found to be associated with other atopic diseases, especially eczema and asthma. Late introduction to solid food was associated with increased risk of FA, however, among all the nutritional factors tested, only exclusive breastfeeding for six months or less was independently associated with reduced risk of FA. FA among children in Kuwait was associated with some nutritional deficiencies syndromes, including rickets, failure to thrive, and iron deficiency anemia. Conclusion: Early nutritional exposures are associated with FA risk. Children with eczema or asthma are good candidates for FA evaluation.
Appears in Programs:1820 Nutrition Science & Food Science

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