Inproceedings: An article in a conference proceedings.
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Allergy to betalactam antibiotics in children: results of a 20-year study
Title of the conference
Annual Congress SGAI-SSAI, Advances in immunology and allergology: from research to diagnosis and therapy
Lugano, Switzerland, March 17-18, 2011
Background: 7 - 20% of the childrenreport suspected allergic reactionsto anti-infectious drugs, thebetalactams being the most frequentlyinvolved. Studies based on skin andchallenge tests have shown that 2 -60% (mean: 10 - 15%) of the childrenwith suspected betalactam hypersensitivitywere really allergic to betalactams,and that the likelihood ofbetalactam hypersensitivity increasedwith the severity and/or the earlinessof the reactions. Methods: We reviewedthe records of 1,865 childrenexplored for suspected betalactam hypersensitivitybetween December1990 and July 2009. The objectivewas to confirm or rule-out the diagnosisof betalactam hypersensitivity, toevaluate the diagnostic value of immediateand non-immediate-readingskin tests with betalactams, and to determinerisk factors for betalactamhypersensitivity. In those childrenskin tests were first performed andthen challenges with the suspectedbetalactams were performed in mostchildren with negative skin test results.Results: 1431 children had acomplete allergological work-up. Fifteen-nine per cent of those childrenwere diagnosed allergic to betalactamsby means of skin tests (7.2%),challenge tests (7.7%), and clinicalhistory (0.9%) respectively. Immediatetype betalactam hypersensitivitywas diagnosed in 3.5% and non-immediatetype in 12.4% of the children.Skin tests diagnosed 86% and 31.6%of immediate and non-immediatesensitizations respectively. Cross-reactivityamong betalactams was diagnosedin 76% of the children with immediatehypersensitivity and in14.7% of the children with non-immediatehypersensitivity. The numberof children diagnosed allergic tobetalactams decreased with time betweenthe reaction and the allergologicalwork-up. Finally, age, sex andpersonal atopy were not significantrisk factors for betalactam allergy.Conclusion: This study, in a verylarge number of children, confirmsthat only a few children with suspectedbetalactam hypersensitivityare really allergic to betalactams, andthat the likelihood of betalactam allergyand cross-reactivity with otherbetalactams increases with the severityand/or the earliness of the reactions.We also confirm that immediate-reading skin tests have a good diagnosticvalue, and that the diagnosticvalue of non-immediate-reading skintests is low, the diagnosis of non-immediatehypersensitivity to betalactamsin children beeing mainly basedon challenge tests.
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