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April 16, 1960


Author Affiliations

Oakland, Calif.

Allergist, Samuel Merritt Hospital, Oakland Naval Hospital; Lecturer in Medicine (Emeritus) University of California Medical School, San Francisco (Dr. Rowe), and Associate Chief of Medicine, Highland Alameda County Hospital and Sub-chief, Department of Internal Medicine, Samuel Merritt Hospital (Dr. Rowe Jr.).

JAMA. 1960;172(16):1734-1743. doi:10.1001/jama.1960.03020160006002

The treatment of bronchial asthma necessitates immediate control of such probable food, inhalant, or drug allergies as might be indicated by the preliminary history. Food allergy, especially in children, is indicated by the pathognomonic history of cyclic attacks decreased or absent in the summer. Because of the fallibility of the skin test, especially in food allergy, test-negative diets usually fail to relieve asthma due to this cause. If food allergy is suspected, immediate ordering of cereal-free elimination diet is nearly always advisable. This diet should not be delayed until the skin testing is finished. Concurrent with control of specific allergies, the use of drugs, corticoids, ACTH, and indicated fluids and electrolytes to control severe or moderate symptoms, is imperative. These principles are exemplified in the histories of 10 patients.