The People's Perspective on Medicine

Show 905: Managing Allergies & Asthma

Allergy season means suffering for millions of Americans. Are there different culprits in spring, summer and fall? How can you determine the cause of sneezing or wheezing reactions, and then what should be done to alleviate the misery?

Antihistamines can be helpful in many cases, but discontinuing abruptly might trigger a withdrawal syndrome.  Learn about the best options for treating allergies and asthma, including controlling environmental triggers.

This Week’s Guest:

David Peden, MD, MS, is Professor of Pediatrics, Medicine, and Microbiology/Immunology. He is chief of the Division of Pediatric Allergy, Immunology, Rheumatology and Infectious Disease, and Associate Chair for Research in the Department of Pediatrics. He is Director of the Center for Environmental Medicine, Asthma & Lung Biology at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, School of Medicine.

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About the Author
Joe Graedon is a pharmacologist who has dedicated his career to making drug information understandable to consumers. His best-selling book, The People’s Pharmacy, was published in 1976 and led to a syndicated newspaper column, syndicated public radio show and web site. In 2006, Long Island University awarded him an honorary doctorate as “one of the country's leading drug experts for the consumer.” .
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I’m currently undergoing sublingual drops for multiple allergies. In the past I’ve researched EPD (Enzyme Particulate Desensitization, I think?) and its predecessor LDA (Low Dose Antigen Therapy, I think). I haven’t seen any information on these allergy treatments in a few years. Any knowledge or update you’ve heard of?

My son, who just turned three, as asthma. I was once told that if we treat it right, he may outgrow it by age five. Is that possible? If so, what can we do to help our son outgrow it. And the key was to have him outgrow it by age five.
Currently, we are giving him budesonide 1/day throughout the Winter and enrolling him in swim classes to strengthen his lungs. I know many families in the same situation and I’m sure many would benefit from a discussion on this today. Thank you!

For chronic rhinosinusitis that has a chronic infection and chronic inflammation component similar to chronic periodontitis the following two substances can be very efficacious in treatment and prevention:
1) xylitol administered in nasal lavage or as Netti Pot nebulization
2) Pycnogenol taken as 100 mg twice a day. This is an average ADULT dose. It is possible that generic versions of Pycnogenol could be as effective as the brand name form of French maritime pine bark extract while costing up to 6 fold less.
The negative to xylitol (that is also marketed as a toothpaste and “mouth mints”) is that it can cause liver damage in dogs.
The negative to Pycnogenol is that it can interact with strong anticoagulants (such as Plavix) to increase their anti-coagulant effects.
For Pycnogenol use in pregnancy and breast feeding is not recommended, not because of negative data but because of lack of data.
A prediction: the rationale use of xylitol and Pycnogenol can safely reduce the pathology of chronic rhinosinusitis and chronic peridontitis by 75% or more. If this prediction is correct, then the national health & dental care cost savings could run into the billions per year.

Please repeat the website for self-appraisal of mold and fungus in homes.
I believe it was Clean Homes_________(?)
Thanks – we get your show in Wisconsin every Saturday morning and really enjoy it.
People’s Pharmacy response: here is the information:Please let folks know that they can get more information on the National Center for Healthy Homes website:

Here is a link to healthy homes resources from the National Center for Healthy Housing. I recommend the video on healthy home assessment:

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