Can Palforzia help my child with their peanut allergy?
UT Health East Texas Physicians Paul C. Sharkey Jr., MD, offers an FDA-approved peanut allergy treatment called Palforzia. Peanut allergy is the second most common food allergy in children. It can be difficult for children and parents to prevent or treat allergic reactions. Depending on the severity of the allergy, it can cause a severe allergic reaction or death.
What is Palforzia?
Palforzia is the first and only FDA-approved treatment to help reduce the severity of allergic reactions to peanuts, including anaphylaxis/severe allergic reaction due to accidental exposure to peanuts or products that contain peanuts.
- Palforzia is indicated for children ages four through 17 years old with a confirmed diagnosis of a peanut allergy. If you turn 18 years of age while on the Palforzia, you should continue the treatment unless otherwise instructed by your doctor.
- Palforzia is a prescription medicine derived from peanuts.
- Palforzia provides a gradual and controlled exposure to increasing doses of peanut allergens over time.
- Palforzia is intended to gradually decrease sensitivity to small amounts of peanuts that may be hidden in foods.
- Palforzia is a medication that must be taken daily to maintain the treatment effect.
- Palforzia is only intended to treat people with peanut allergy—it is not effective against other food allergies.
- Palforzia does not treat allergic reactions and should not be given during an allergic reaction.
- You must maintain a strict peanut-free diet while taking Palforzia.
How does Palforzia work?
Palforzia works by helping your child gradually decrease their sensitivity to peanuts over time through a process called oral immunotherapy.
At your child’s first treatment appointment, your allergist will start by administering small, increasing doses of Palforzia. Your child will be monitored closely and if these doses are tolerated, they will return the next day to begin the next phase.
The following day at the allergist’s office, your child will begin the up-dosing phase of treatment. They will be monitored carefully to make sure they can keep taking Palforzia.
Starting the next day, you will give your child the same dose of Palforzia every day at home for two weeks before returning to the clinic to adjust/increase the next dose. Palforzia must be taken every day for it to be effective.
Palforzia is not a cure for peanut allergies. However, it can help make your child’s reaction to accidental exposure less severe.
You should not take Palforzia if:
- You have uncontrolled asthma.
- You ever had eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE) or other eosinophilic gastrointestinal disease.
To learn more or to begin therapy, call 903-939-7870 to schedule an appointment.