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Food-dependent exercise-induced anaphylaxis--update and current data.

Exercise-induced anaphylaxis (EIA) is defined as the onset of allergic symptoms during, or immediately after, exercise, the clinical signs being various degrees of urticaria, angioedema, respiratory and gastrointestinal signs and even anaphylactic shock. Food-dependent exercise-induced anaphylaxis (FDEIA) introduces food in the syndrome and is revealed by a chronological sequence in which food intake, followed by exercise, induces symptoms after a varying period. When the food intake and the exercise are independent of each other, there are no symptoms. FDEIA is not very frequent. Identifying the culprit food allergen depends on the patient's eating habits. Crustaceans and wheat flour are the two commonest but others foods can be implicated. The patho-physiology of FDEIA has not been clearly established but it appears to result from degranulation of mast cells. As with food allergy, FDEIA diagnosis is based on interview, skin and biological tests and challenge. For the clinical signs of allergy, antihistamines, corticosteroids and epinephrine may be administered. Prophylaxis aims to prevent a recurrence; the patient should be given an emergency kit to deal with any recurrent episode. After the food allergen has been identified, it should be avoided for at least 4 to 5 hours before any exercise.

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