Scientific article

Food immunotherapy practice: Nation differences across Europe, the FIND project

Published inAllergy, vol. 77, no. 3, p. 920-932
Publication date2022-03
First online date2021-07-21

Background: Food allergen immunotherapy (FA-AIT) practice is known to vary globally. This project aims to identify and characterize European centres performing FA-AIT.

Methods: An EAACI task force conducted an online survey to gather relevant information regarding FA-AIT practice and setting-specific resources after reviewing the published literature and congress abstracts throughout Europe.

Results: We identified 102 FA-AIT centres in 18 countries; only Spain (n = 39) and France (n = 16) had ≥10 such centres. Overall, most facilities were hospital-based (77.5%), publicly funded (80.4%) and delivered FA-AIT as routine clinical care (80.4%). On average, departments had 3 allergists/paediatric allergists and 2 nurses. Surveyed centres had provided FA-AIT for a median of 9 years [1-24] to a median of 105 [5-2415] patients. The estimated total number of treated patients was 24875, of whom 41.3% received AIT for milk, 34.2% egg, 12.8% peanut and 11.7% other foods. Anaphylaxis to AIT doses requiring over 4-6 h of observation was reported by 70.6% of centres, ICU admissions by 10.8% and eosinophilic esophagitis by 45.1%. Quality of life and sustained unresponsiveness were evaluated in 20.6% and 54.9% of centres, respectively. The main contraindications for food AIT were severe asthma (57%-63%), eosinophilic esophagitis (56%-48%) and age below 5 years (47%-41%).

Conclusions: In Europe, FA-AIT is provided mostly in clinical practice. Significant variation is seen in the number of centres per country, facility characteristics and inclusion/exclusion criteria, and in certain aspects of protocols. Potential inequality in access to AIT has been identified as well as the need for education and guidance for treatment standardization.

  • Allergy
  • Egg
  • Food immunotherapy
  • Milk
  • Peanut
  • Allergens
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Desensitization, Immunologic / methods
  • Eosinophilic Esophagitis / etiology
  • Europe / epidemiology
  • Food Hypersensitivity / epidemiology
  • Food Hypersensitivity / etiology
  • Food Hypersensitivity / therapy
  • Humans
  • Quality of Life
Citation (ISO format)
RODRÍGUEZ DEL RÍO, Pablo et al. Food immunotherapy practice: Nation differences across Europe, the FIND project. In: Allergy, 2022, vol. 77, n° 3, p. 920–932. doi: 10.1111/all.15016
Main files (1)
Article (Published version)
Secondary files (3)
ISSN of the journal0105-4538

Technical informations

Creation11/11/2022 10:36:15 AM
First validation06/30/2023 1:19:50 PM
Update time06/30/2023 1:19:50 PM
Status update06/30/2023 1:19:50 PM
Last indexation08/31/2023 11:53:24 AM
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