Put Food Allergies Behind You
What if you could eat the foods you love without the fear of a reaction? Can you imagine a life that didn’t revolve around food allergies? It’s time to consider a new solution: oral immunotherapy (OIT).
Allergy Group NJ is one of the few practices in the country to offer OIT allergy treatment, and we’ve made a difference in the lives of hundreds of children in our program.
What is Oral Immunotherapy (OIT)?
Oral immunotherapy (OIT) is a new treatment for food allergy that trains the immune system to tolerate a food. Previously, avoidance of foods was the only option available to patients with anaphylactic food allergy. However, research from around the world showed that it was possible to “desensitize” an individual to peanut, milk and other foods by giving small doses and gradually increasing the amount eaten. The FDA approved a commercial product for peanut OIT in 2020, thus establishing the efficacy and safety of oral immunotherapy.
A small number of allergists around the country have now developed the expertise to offer this treatment option for their patients with anaphylactic food allergies.
How OIT Allergy Treatment Works
At an OIT visit, your child will be fed a very small amount of the food and observed in the office for an hour to be sure it is tolerated. This same dose is then taken daily at home for two weeks. The dose will be gradually increased every two weeks at an “updose” visit in our office. Within 12 months or less most patients are able to tolerate the food that once threatened their health, with no reactions. In the case of peanut OIT, patient are able to tolerate the equivalent of one or two peanuts. The amount will differ for other food allergens such as eggs or milk. Skin and blood tests will then be repeated to determine if the food sensitivity has decreased. If so, the escalation process can continue up to a full serving size.
OIT works especially well in young children. In a recent peanut study, 71% of the children could eat 17 peanuts after treatment. NIAID Director Dr. Anthony Fauci said “The landmark results of the trial suggest a window of opportunity in early childhood to induce remission of peanut allergy through oral immunotherapy.” (see the study)
Goals of Oral Immunotherapy
Families seeking OIT may have different goals. Some may just want protection against cross-contamination or the ability to consume foods with the “may contain” label. Others may seek “bite-proof” protection—or the ability to be safeguarded against severe reactions from accidental ingestions of larger amounts. Some desire the ability to “free-eat” where they can consume the allergen without restrictions. Wherever possible, the OIT program can be customized for each family’s goals.
Families all share the need to take back control of their lives. Immunotherapy for food allergies opens up a world of new possibilities for you and your family.
Schedule a Consultation for Food Allergy Oral Immunotherapy
Allergy Group NJ has an well-established oral immunotherapy program for children and adults with anaphylactic food allergies. We have treated hundreds of patients safely and successfully. If you want to know if you or your child are a candidate for OIT, schedule a consultation with us.
Learn More About OIT Therapy
OIT Frequently Asked Questions