Honoring Those Who Save Lives, Dr. Jeremy Cushman and Jamie Kosten

It’s always nice to reward people who go well above the call of duty to make the world a better (and safer) place. Dr. Jeremy Cushman, who will be presented with the John J. Condemi award, helped to implement the Check and Inject program that allows EMTs to administer epinephrine using a vial and syringe. This program is saving thousands of dollars every year and has increased awareness of anaphylaxis and the role epinephrine plays in saving lives.

Our Ruth T. Cornell award will be presented to Jamie Kosten who saved is father’s life by administering epinephrine after his father was stung by a bee. Congratulations to both!

Honoring Those Who Save Lives,  Dr. Jeremy Cushman and Jamie Kosten

Jamie Kosten (left) and Dr Jeremy Cushman (right)

By Suzanne Driscoll
September 9th, 2019

On Thursday October 10th the Allergy Advocacy Association will hold our second annual Action Awards Gala. Our association will honor Jeremy Cushman MD and Jamie Kosten; Dr. Jeremy Cushman will receive the John J. Condemi award and Jamie Kosten will receive the Ruthie T. Cornell award.

Two men could hardly be more different than Jeremy and Jamie. One is a grown man with many years as a practicing physician. The other is a young man working his way towards graduation from McQuaid Jesuit High School. Both men, however, have aided individuals at risk for anaphylaxis in two very unique ways. And saved lives, too!

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Sanofi Seeking Billions from Mylan in Epi-Pen© Anti-trust Suit

As noted in the previous article, whenever a company owns 90% of a product’s market share, it can create havoc when there are quality issues causing supplies to dwindle. Sanofi was a competitor of Mylan’s EpiPen, and lost so much money due to Mylan’s alleged unfair selling practices that they turned the rights back to Kaléo in 2016. Now Sanofi is suing Mylan for erecting barriers such as not allowing insurers and pharmacies to get rebates if they offered reimbursement for Sanofi’s product, Auvi-Q. Fortunately, Kaléo re-introduced Auvi-Q to the market in 2017.

You can read the whole sordid story below.

Sanofi Seeking Billions from Mylan in Epi-Pen© Anti-trust Suit

Monopoly Game Cartoon Millionaire with EpiPens

By Dave Bloom
August 13, 2019

Prompt administration of epinephrine can mean the difference between life and death for a food allergy sufferer experiencing anaphylaxis, a severe, sometimes fatal reaction to an allergen. That’s why those that have been diagnosed with an allergy to specific foods are encouraged to carry two epinephrine auto-injectors with them at all times, wherever they go.

Back in 2015, there were three epinephrine auto-injectors approved for the US market: EpiPen by Mylan — by far the dominant product with a 90% market share — Adrenaclick by Impax, and Auvi-Q, a relatively new entrant at the time manufactured and marketed by Sanofi.

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Sesame Allergy Rates Are Increasing: Here’s What to Know

Allergies to sesame can be a tough one to deal with since it’s in so many different foods and is still not required to be listed on food labels. The ninth most common allergy, it may end up being up to individual states to pass legislation mandating sesame to be added to the list of eight allergens now required to be labeled. Meanwhile promising research is taking place by exposing children to sesame who are under six months of age and are at risk of developing this allergy, such as being allergic to another type of food.

Sesame Allergy Rates Are Increasing: Here’s What to Know

Sesame seeds aren’t required to be listed on food labels. Getty Images

By Kristen Fischer
August 2, 2019

Sesame allergy is more common than most people may think, according to a new study (Prevalence and Severity of Sesame Allergy in the United States) published today in JAMA Network Open.

More than 1 million children and adults in the United States have the allergy, estimates the new data — higher than what was previously reported.

At that number, it’s the ninth most common allergy in the United States.

And that makes experts concerned about exposure risk — since only the top eight allergens are reported on food labels.

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New Peanut Allergy Treatment Shows Effectiveness and Safety

There is yet another approach to desensitizing those who are allergic to peanuts. Instead of having patients ingest peanut protein as in oral immune therapy, doctors using Sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT) place a small amount of peanut protein under patients’ tongues. Because the peanut protein goes immediately to the blood stream and avoids digestion, patients can be given much smaller amounts that will hopefully avoid serious side effects.

New Peanut Allergy Treatment Shows Effectiveness and Safety

Shelled Peanuts

Source: University of North Carolina Health Care
Date: September 4, 2019

Sublingual immunotherapy (SLIT) trial participants tolerated between 10 and 20 times more peanut protein than it would take for someone to get sick. Researchers say SLIT provides a good cushion of protection with an easy mechanism (tiny bit of liquid under the tongue) and a strong safety signal.

People allergic to peanuts may have a new way to protect themselves from severe allergic reactions to accidental peanut exposure. It's called sublingual immunotherapy — or SLIT — and it involves putting a miniscule amount of liquefied peanut protein under the tongue, where it is absorbed immediately into the blood stream to desensitize the immune system to larger amounts of peanut protein.

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Watch Out: Bee Sting Deaths Have Been on the Rise, CDC Data Shows

Preventing deaths from bee stings is very close to our hearts, as this is how our founder Jon Terry’s sister died. Recent studies report 1,109 deaths from bee, hornet and wasp stings during the past 17 years. And if you’ve had a severe allergic reaction to a bee sting, there is a 30-60% chance you will experience full-blown anaphylaxis the next time you are stung. If you have experienced a bad reaction, it is important to discuss with an allergist whether you should get allergy shots to help prevent anaphylaxis.

Watch Out: Bee Sting Deaths Have Been on the Rise, CDC Data Shows

Wasp on Green Plant

By Jared Gilmour
August 2, 2019

Bee, hornet and wasp stings can be deadly — and over a recent six-year period, those stings have killed more and more Americans, according to a new report released Friday.

The number of United States deaths caused by hornet, wasp or bee stings ticked up each year from 2012 to 2017, the most recent years of National Vital Statistics System data that were analyzed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the report.

Researchers did not give a reason for the steady increase in reported sting deaths over those six years, and the CDC did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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