Allergy Today 2016

Allergy News – How Temperature-controlled Laminar Airfl ow (TLA) Treatment Could Benefi t Patients with Severe Allergic Asthma – Exploring Gluten and Wheat Related Disorders – Pollen: Friend or Foe?

Welcome to the latest edition of Allergy Today. This issue illustrates what a dynamic field of medicine that Allergology has become. Traditionally, the cornerstone of the management of any allergy was simple avoidance. Although sometimes effective this could have enormous implications for quality of life, for example with food allergies, whilst with allergy to environmental triggers, avoidance can be wholly impractical. However, innovations in the area are starting to change the way we do things. Temperature-controlled Laminar Airflow (TLA) devices are already showing their effectiveness in the treatment of asthma, where environmental allergy plays a part and are making allergen avoidance a more practical reality.

Allergen desensitisation is another innovative approach, where deliberate exposure can change the way our body responds and significantly lessen the effect of an allergen. Sadly, there is still a lot of work to do in not just refining these treatments but also in convincing the National Health Service to make them accessible to everybody who could benefit.

Another area of intense interest is that of gluten and wheat. It is not long since we completely failed to recognise the many different ways that our bodies could react to wheat. Coeliac disease was significantly underestimated in its prevalence and many people suffered unknowingly, long into adult life. There was also a failure to recognise that those who did not quite fit the label of coeliac disease could also still be reacting. Fortunately, our awareness in this area is improving and provides another example to doctors of how important it is to listen to our patients rather than trying to fit them into the diagnostic boxes we create and dismiss them if they don’t!