Up to 10% of children and adolescents in the United States may have asthma and up to 40% may be affected by allergic rhinitis. Most people know that asthma is a serious disease, but "hay fever" is often mistakenly considered trivial. However, hay fever symptoms can significantly influence a patient's quality of life, causing fatigue, headache, and even cognitive impairment. Both asthma and allergic rhinitis can result in lost sleep, many missed school days, and the inability to participate in sports and other recreational activities in which young people engage. An appropriate diagnosis is the first step toward improving quality of life for these young patients. This article reviews diagnostic procedures for allergic disease, and-because compliance is frequently an issue with school-aged patients-it also reviews current thinking on allergen immunotherapy, a treatment that provides effective long-term control in appropriately selected patients.
|Number of pages
|Adolescent medicine (Philadelphia, Pa.)
|Published - Oct 2000
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- General Medicine