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Quality of Life May Drop for Some During Oral Immunotherapy

TUESDAY, May 30, 2017 -- For patients with food allergy, quality of life (QOL) following oral immunotherapy (OIT) improves for some but deteriorates in others, according to a study published online May 22 in Allergy.

Na'ama Epstein Rigbi, M.D., from Assaf Harofeh Medical Center in Zerifin, Israel, and colleagues administered the Food Allergy Quality of Life Questionnaire-Parent Form (FAQLQ-PF) to children aged 4 to 12 years undergoing OIT for milk, peanut, or egg allergy. Questionnaires were administered at the beginning of treatment and after four months, and were categorized as improved, unchanged, or diminished. Patients with food allergy not undergoing OIT were included as controls.

The researchers found that during the study period there was improvement in the food anxiety, social and dietary limitations, and total FAQLQ-PF scores (P = 0.001, 0.018, and 0.01, respectively) in treated patients, but not in controls (P = 0.75, 0.93, and 0.64, respectively); there was no improvement in the emotional impact (P = 0.17). The change in FAQLQ-PF was not affected by the maximal tolerated dose, the pace of dose increase, or the number or severity of reactions. In multivariate analysis, there was an inverse association for the total FAQLQ-PF score with the score at baseline (P < 0.001), which was mainly driven by improvement in QOL scores in patients with high score (worse QOL) at baseline. There was deterioration for some patients with low FAQLQ-PF score (better QOL) at baseline.

"Patients with impaired QOL at baseline, improve significantly despite the treatment burden," the authors write. "Some patients with better QOL at baseline, might deteriorate during OIT."

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Posted: May 2017