Benefits of Early Epinephrine

We like to share important research that we learn about related to food allergies. Here’s a study we heard about recently through Kids with Food Allergies (KFA) related to the use of epinephrine in cases of food-induced anaphylaxis. You can read KFA’s original post here. You can actually read the full article (for free!) on the website for the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice. For those of you who don’t want to take the time to read it, we’ll be happy to provide a summary!

The primary author, Jude Fleming, MD, is associated with Hasbro Children’s Hospital in Rhode Island. Dr. Fleming and the rest of the researchers examined the association between early use of epinephrine and hospitalization. Basically, they wanted to know if people who get epinephrine sooner in a case of food-induced anaphylaxis end up admitted for a longer stay at the hospital any more or less often. The previous research on this topic had been inconclusive. The research team looked through six years of medical records for patients who came to the emergency department (ED) at Hasbro Children’s Hospital with food-induced anaphylaxis.

The team found 234 cases of patients visiting the ED for food-induced anaphylaxis who received epinephrine at some point. They grouped the patients based on whether they got epinephrine before they arrived to the ED or after. Then they looked at how many patients in each group were admitted for a longer stay at the hospital.

Dr. Fleming and the team found that the patients who got epinephrine before they arrived to the ED were much less likely to be hospitalized. They concluded that it’s better to give epinephrine promptly in cases of food-induced anaphylaxis versus waiting for the epinephrine to be given in the ED.

If you aren’t sure what this means for you or your loved one, make sure to discuss it with your healthcare team.

Rob McCandlish, RDN

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Published: 03/09/2015
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