• adolescents;
  • autoinjector;
  • epinephrine;
  • food allergy;
  • prevalence

To cite this article: Flokstra-de Blok BMJ, van Ginkel CD, Roerdink EM, Kroeze MAJM, Stel AA, van der Meulen GN, Dubois AEJ. Extremely low prevalence of epinephrine autoinjectors in high-risk food-allergic adolescents in Dutch high schools. Pediatr Allergy Immunol 2011; 22: 374–377.


The aim of the study was to estimate the prevalence of probable food allergy in adolescents aged 11–20 and to examine the frequency of epinephrine autoinjector (EAI) ownership among high-risk individuals. Adolescents were screened followed by a more detailed telephone questionnaire inquiring about suspected food(s), symptoms, diagnosis, and use of an EAI. The participating adolescents were classified as probably or unlikely to be food-allergic. The need for an EAI was assessed. In total, 2284 adolescents completed the screening questionnaire, of which 396 indicated food to be a problem and 168 agreed to be interviewed. Forty-eight adolescents were classified as probably food-allergic, of which eight were not aware of their food allergy. Twenty-three adolescents were considered candidates for an EAI, whereas only two of them had been prescribed this medication. The calculated questionnaire-based prevalence of EAI need was 3.0% (minimal prevalence at least 1.0%), whereas the EAI ownership was 0.09%. In conclusion, we found an alarming under prescription of EAIs in school-going adolescents.