In The News: Allergies

The First Peanut Allergy Drug On the Cusp of FDA Approval

AR101 is an investigational biologic oral immunotherapy produced by Aimmune therapeutics.  If that sounds like a mouthful, it is, so let’s break down what that really means. AR101 will be a commercially available “drug” with a proposed trade name of Palforzia. As such, it requires approval by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). It is currently considered “investigational” because it has not been approved by the FDA and is still under investigation. The term “biologic” refers to a product that is isolated from natural sources and not chemically manufactured. As explained by the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, “oral immunotherapy (OIT) refers to feeding an allergenic individual an increasing amount of allergen with the goal of increasing the threshold that triggers a reaction.”  In the case of AR101, the product is designed for peanut allergic patients and the treatment goal is to reduce the frequency and severity of allergic reactions due to accidental peanut exposure. 

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Top 9 Asthma Triggers

Asthma is an inflammatory condition of the airways in your lungs. It effects 8-10% of the population – that’s 24 million Americans! Asthma usually begins in childhood but can occur in adulthood and is the #1 cause of missed school and work. Asthma is triggered by a variety of exposures detailed below.

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5 Hidden Allergies To Watch Out For

Sometimes allergies can be fairly obvious and occur in response to common exposures, for instance, when pollen covers your car in the springtime, and you can’t stop sneezing!  Other times it can be hard to recognize what is causing an allergic reaction. The cause may be something that you would never relate your symptoms to. We will discuss a few of these less recognized allergies below. 

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What You Need to Know About Pesky Summer Bug Bites

Summer is here and the time is right for…tiny critters that sting and bite. While it is certainly nice to be able to go outside and enjoy the nice warm weather, this is the time of year when people suffer from reactions to insect bites and stings.  Some bug bites are painful, some spread disease, and some are uncomfortable but harmless. There are some misconceptions out there, so we’ll discuss specifically what you need to know regarding bothersome bug bites – which ones can cause life-threatening allergic reactions and which ones are just pesky pests. 

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4th Annual Peanut Free Night

It’s Peanut Free Night at the Joe!

Wednesday, May 15th 2019 at 6pm

We couldn’t be more excited to announce our 4th Annual Peanut Free Night! Come join us Wednesday, May 15th as the RiverDogs take on West Virginia Power (Pittsburgh Pirates affiliate). Gates open at 6:00pm and the game starts at 7:05pm.

This partnership with the RiverDogs allows families who are peanut allergic to come to the Joe and enjoy a fun night of baseball. Enjoying an evening of baseball at a stadium is a luxury that peanut allergic families often don’t feel comfortable doing. Since peanuts are a staple in America’s favorite past-time, those allergic often don’t feel safe attending this type of event. Fear of cross-contamination and exposure to peanuts means baseball stadiums are often avoided.

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How Climate Change is Making Allergy Seasons Worse

Currently, the vast majority of climate scientists feel that climate change is occurring and that our planet is warming. Global warming is an increase in average global temperature that is mainly attributed – directly or indirectly – to human activities resulting in an increase in atmospheric greenhouse gases including water vapor, ozone, carbon dioxide, and methane.  Unfortunately, belief in, or rejection of, climate change and global warming have recently become a “political football” and now seems to define specific political parties.

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FDA Extends Expiration Date For Certain Lots of EpiPens

In an effort to mitigate EpiPen shortages, the FDA is extending the expiration date for specific lots of 0.3 milligram products.

“We are doing everything we can to help mitigate shortages of these products, especially ahead of the back-to-school season. We’ve completed the necessary reviews of the data to extend the expiration date by four months for specific lots of EpiPen that are expired or close to expiring.” – Exerpt from the FDA in Brief

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What you Need to Know About Fall Allergies

There might not be a yellow coating on your car but fall still brings with it plenty of allergen exposure! Unlike the tree pollen of early spring, fall allergens can be more stealth with their arrival.  Weeds will start pollinating as early as August and can pollinate through the first frost, which in Charleston can be as late as December depending on the year.

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Thunderstorm Asthma on the Rise

Believe it or not, thunderstorms can actually cause asthma attacks.  This phenomenon has been observed and mentioned in medical literature since 1983.  If atmospheric conditions are just right, thunderstorms can cause allergy particles in the atmosphere, especially grass pollen, to be broken down into smaller particles that are easily inhaled into the lungs.  Patients who are sensitive or allergic to these particles can suddenly developed severe asthma symptoms which can require hospitalization or even intensive care.

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