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Are we making food allergies worse by over reacting?




Arcade restaurant waitress Julia Flowers holds a peanut butter and banana sandwich, Elvis Presley's favorite snack, on the 25th anniversary of Presley's death during Elvis Week August 16, 2002 in Memphis, Tennessee.
Arcade restaurant waitress Julia Flowers holds a peanut butter and banana sandwich, Elvis Presley's favorite snack, on the 25th anniversary of Presley's death during Elvis Week August 16, 2002 in Memphis, Tennessee.
Mario Tama/Getty Images

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It’s a terror for parents of allergic children. Somehow, your kid shares a peanut butter sandwich with a friend, and suddenly he’s having trouble breathing and has to go to the emergency room. The response has been for schools to try and ban peanuts from schools. But food allergies, researchers are finding, are not that simple. Some studies say doctors sometimes misinterpret tests and over-diagnose food allergies. Failing to expose young children to these foods can create actual allergies later in life. What should the policy be on foods where allergic children study and play? And how can parents better protect their children from potentially lethal foods?

Guests:

Calman Prussin, investigator at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases

Melinda Braskett, M.D, Medical Director, UCLA Food & Drug Allergy Care Center; Assistant Clinical Professor, David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA

Scott H. Sicherer, M.D. is Professor of Pediatrics and a researcher at the Jaffe Food Allergy Institute at Mount Sinai in New York and author of “Understanding and Managing Your Child’s Food Allergies (Johns Hopkins Press)”