Entries by brianmillhollon

Wine Allergy

Wine is made from grapes and like grape, true allergic reactions are, thankfully, rare. If a grape allergy is suspected, it can be easily ruled out or confirmed with an allergy skin test. Many people do however complain of problems when they drink wine and yet are not allergic to grape. If these reactions to […]

Beer Allergy

Beer is the third most popular beverage, behind water and tea. In spite of this, true allergic reactions to beer are rare. Beer contains four primary ingredients:  Water, malted barley, yeast, and hops. Barely that has been partially sprouted and then dried is called malt. Malting develops enzymes that break down the starches in the […]

Alcohol Allergy

Can you be allergic to alcohol?  The short answer is, “Yes”.  The full picture is a bit more complicated. To start we need to distinguish true allergic reactions to alcohol from what we might broadly call “adverse reactions”. In an adverse reaction, bad things happen when you consume an alcoholic drink but the mechanism for […]

What is Histamine?

Histamine is the nemesis of people with allergies and the allergists that care for them. Think of any allergic symptom and it is probably caused by histamine.  Histamine in the nose causes itching, sneezing, dripping, and congestion.  In the gastrointestinal system, it causes cramping pain, diarrhea, and vomiting.  In the skin, it causes itching, flushing, […]

Sesame Seed Allergy

Sesame seed is a common ingredient in our diet. It is also one of the most common causes of serious allergic reactions, particularly in children. When thinking of sesame seed one of the first images to come to mind are the tiny seeds added to bread, buns, and crackers. An estimated 75% of Mexico’s sesame […]

Diagnosing Food Allergy: The Food Challenge

Fourteen year old Hanna was at the mall with friends when she discovered she was allergic to macadamia nut.  This fact became clear when she nearly died. She had only taken a few bites of the ice cream with macadamia nut from Cold Stone Creamery.  She had eaten a variety of nuts on numerous occasions […]

Annual Bluegrass (Poa annua)

Kentucky bluegrass is the most common turfgrass in the United States. Its use as a turf grass in Arizona is limited to the cooler parts of the state, typically at elevations about 5000 ft, although it may be used in some aggressively maintained golf courses at lower elevation. Annual bluegrass is a weedy variety that invades […]

Sulfa Antibiotic Allergy: Common and Frequently Misunderstood

Sulfa drugs were the first antibiotics Sulfa drugs were the first chemicals available to treat bacterial infections in humans.  The proper designation for this class of drugs is sulfonamide but they became knows as “sulfa” antibiotics with their widespread use as powders and pills during WW ll.  Although sulfa antibiotics saved lives, their use decreased significantly after the introduction […]

A New (?) Treatment for Peanut Allergy

New Product to Treat Peanut Allergy The Allergenic Products Advisory Committee of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently voted to recommend approval of a new treatment for peanut allergy to the FDA.  The treatment was previously referred to as AR101 but it is expected to go by the brand name Palforzia,  If as expected,  the […]