In Brazil, there are no epidemiological data about the prevalence of adverse food reaction and food allergy in children since there are no population-based studies that have used questionnaires which have been analyzed in terms of reproducibility and validation.
The questions with good internal consistency and good levels of reproducibility highlight the major aspects of an adverse food reaction with a possibly allergic etiology.
Table 1: Evaluation of the test-retest reproducibility of the survey about adverse food reaction and food allergy according to Kappa concordance.
In Brazil, there is the need of a well-designed, reproducible, and validated questionnaire that can be used for the initial diagnosis of adverse food reactions and putative food allergies.
A variety of diagnostic techniques exist for checking adverse food reactions
: skin patch testing, intradermal testing, sublingual testing, the elimination diet, fasting, RAST test, FAST test, MAST test, and the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) test.
Evaluation of a patient for suspected adverse food reactions
involves a thorough history, physical examination, and laboratory tests.
Similarly, nearly one-third of parents perceive adverse food reactions
to be responsible for a multitude of symptoms in their children and modify their children's diets in response (Bock 1987).
Adverse food reactions
may be toxic or nontoxic reactions.
True prevalence of adverse food reactions
is unknown; however, a review of the literature indicates that approximately 6-8% of children and 1-2% of adults have some type of food allergy (Bock 1987; Burks et al.
Testing for adverse food reactions
serves many important purposes and provides significant benefit to the patient.