Food allergy in early childhood increases the risk of pollen-food
Abstract Background: The level of pollen in Korea has increased over
recent decades. Research suggests that pollen-food allergy syndrome
(PFAS) may be more frequent in childhood than previously recognized. We
aimed to investigate the prevalence and characteristics of PFAS in
children aged 6–10 years from a general population-based birth cohort.
Methods: We analyzed 930 children from the COhort for Childhood Origin
of Asthma and allergic diseases (COCOA) birth cohort. Allergic diseases
were diagnosed annually by pediatric allergists. The skin prick tests
were performed with 14 common inhalant allergens and four food allergens
for children aged 3 and 7 years. Results: Of the 930 eligible children,
44 (4.7%) aged 6–10 years were diagnosed with. The mean age at onset
was 6.74 years. PFAS prevalence was 7.2% among children with allergic
rhinitis (AR) and 19.1% among those with pollinosis, depending on
comorbidity. PFAS was more prevalent in schoolchildren with atopic
dermatitis, food allergy, and sensitization to food allergens and grass
pollen in early childhood. In schoolchildren with AR, only a history of
food allergy before 3 years increased the risk of PFAS (aOR 2.971, 95%
CI: 1.159–7.615). Conclusion: Food allergy and food sensitization in
early childhood was associated with PFAS in schoolchildren with AR.
Further study is required to elucidate the mechanism by which food
allergy in early childhood affects the development of PFAS.