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Food Allergies/Latex Fruit Allergy

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Question
Hello David

I have recently been diagnosed with a borderline latex allergy via Rast testing. After reading about latex allergies I came across information on latex fruit allergy. As I've already tested positive for latex, will I need to avoid foods containing proteins similar to latex?

Additionally, is it possible to be tested by Rast for foods like avocados, bananas, tomatoes, etc or does this need to be done through an elimination diet? I thought I should mention I live in Australia, just in case testing is different to the UK.

I look forward to your response.

Kind regards
Jen

Answer
There are actually several questions here:

1. You cannot diagnose allergies on Rast tests. They, even less than skin prick tests only confirm the presence of IgE class antibodies in your blood and skin respectively. The level of Rast and skin test reactivity, have a better correlation with clinical sensitivity. The higher the more likely. Boderline is exactly that, borderline. I'd only believe it with suitable clinical testing.

2. People allergic to rubber latex react to that and not to non-rubber latex's. I can find no reason to suspect rubber latex cross-reacts with anything else, However:

3. There is a syndrome called Fresh Fruit Allergy in the UK and oropharyngeal syndrome in mainland Europe. Suddenly one day, usually in the late teens or early twenties, when the subject starts to get itchy and swollen lips immediately on eating fresh fruit. In Northern Europe they usually have preceding tree allergy, in Italy they have grass pollen allergy. This can only be proven by skin tests with very fresh fruit juice. Rast testing is counter productive (It identifies antibodies to the wrong determinants#. This is not a cross-sensitivity, but separate allergies that just seem to occur together more often than by chance alone. There is something similar between latex allergy and some fruit, especially tropical fruit.

Skin testing with fresh fruit is very simple: Get a sample of the relevant fruit#s)and one sterile needle for each fruit and stab the needle into the fruit: Then use that as in the usual procedure for skin-prick testing. Hope this helps.

Food Allergies

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David Pearson

Expertise

Any in the field I believe. Only experience of questions that get asked will tell.

Experience

I am a retired medical academic from the UK. I have done major research on Food Allergy and have been a government adviser in the area. 30 years experience running an allergy clinic. And undergraduate and post-graduate teaching.

Organizations
Well, apart from the FRCP, I'm no longer active in the area. I'm too busy writing books. And I no longer have the cash to go to international meetings. But was active in many.

Publications
Will 120 scientific papers help? Chapters in books. Patient advisory materials. Magazine articles. TV appearances. Live and recorded. National and international invited lectures, etc. It was my job for 40 years. Do you think I count!

Education/Credentials
MD, PhD, Postgraduate Diplomas etc. Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians. etc. But I don't want that put out on the net! Just to let you know!

Awards and Honors
irrelevant.

Past/Present Clients
Too many to count, patients of course and a large number of all sorts of corporate consultancies and considerable work as an expert witness in the Courts. I'm volunteering because your Greek expert has been so helpful, I thought I'd offer something back.

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