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Keywords:

  • fruit allergy;
  • immediate hypersensitivity;
  • latex

The purpose of this study was to investigate the prevalence of latex allergy in fruit-allergic patients, and to assess its clinical significance. Fifty-seven fruit-allergic patients and 50 non-fruit-allergic atopic patient controls were studied. All patients were questioned about conventional immediate symptoms after contact with latex products. Patients also underwent skin prick testing and determination of specific serum IgE to latex, as well as a screening test for environmental allergens. Immunologic latex sensitization occurred in 49/57 (85.9%) fruit-allergic patients, who showed a positive STP and/or CAP to latex, but in only two controls (P<0.001). Six out of 57 (10.5%) fruit-allergic patients suffered from clinically relevant latex allergy. Symptoms included contact urticaria, angioedema, conjunctivitis, generalized urticaria, and moderate anaphylactic reactions. No control reported symptoms with latex products (P=0.052). In all patients, clinical symptoms to fruits preceded a history of latex allergy. The fruits most associated were melon, peach, and banana. From our data, we conclude that there is a potential for allergic reactions to latex in patients with allergy to fruit. All patients with fruit allergy should be screened for individual risk of latex allergy.