News of World Medicine

WHO: the XXI century will become the century of allergy

According to deplorable prognosis of the World Health Organization, the XXI century will become the century of allergy.

For recent 30 years allergic diseases, including bronchial asthma, have become most spreading diseases all over the world. According to statistics, every fifth citizen of our planet suffers from allergy: every sixth American and every fourth German.

And from 30 to 60 % of megapolis population are liable to this disease.

The growth of allergic diseases is noted both among adults and among children. Today every third child in European countries suffers from allergy, and every tenth – from bronchial asthma. According to the WHO, on average 10% of children all over Europe suffer from allergy symptoms. At the same time, in Western Europe the level of symptoms is 10-folt to that of Eastern countries. The International Study of Asthma and Allergy in Childhood (ISAAC), conducted in 1995-1996, revealed that annual average incidence of self-registered asthma symptoms in adolescents aged 13-14 all over Europe is 11.5%. This level varies from 2.6 to 4.4% in Albania, Romania, Georgia, and Greece, and up to 29.1-32.2% in Ireland and Great Britain. It suggests that western way of life is associated with allergic diseases in children. 

Allergy is atypical reaction of human immune system to usual substances: food, environment, clothes, chemical substances, animals, plants, etc. They distinguish several types of allergic reactions according to the organ or group of organs, where it appears. So, we speak about respiratory allergy, when its symptoms appear in human respiratory tract (nasal cavity and lungs), about skin allergy, when it appears on the skin cover, and about ophthalmological one, when the allergen affects eyes.

The most frequent type of allergic reactions is a respiratory allergy manifested as an allergic rhinitis, which occurs in 20-25% of the Earth population, and in resent quarter of the century the number of patients increases 3-folds. 

They also distinguish different types of allergy due to its cause. So, there is grass pollen allergy, kiss-type allergy, food allergy, medicamentous allergy, house dust allergy, animal hair allergy and even latex allergy.

The first and most necessary step in treatment of any type of allergy is allergen detection and decreasing contact with it. As for medicinal preparations, the first place is still occupied by antihistamines. Many of us remember very well those first antihistaminic preparations that in addition to its antiallergic effect had the whole set of side-effects: they caused drossiness, worsened attention and memory, reduced reaction rate. About 15 years ago there were developed modern antiallergic preparations, which practically have no adverse reactions. In particular, antihistamines of the second generation on the basis of such active substances as original Loratadine or Desloratadine, are safe and highly effective in treatment of any type of allergy.

In any case it is necessary to remember that allergy is a serious disease, which can occur at any age. Without proper attention it may significantly worsen the quality of life and lead to insomnia, headaches, stress, and memory reduction. That is why when allergy is suspected it is necessary to turn for professional advice to the doctor allergologist. 


Adopted from: AMI-TASS