Pediatric Annals this month includes a series of reviews that focus on issues centering around the topic of pediatric allergy and immunology. Among these is an excellent review of the role of allergen immunotherapy (allergy shots) by Dr. Michelle Lierl (see page 192). This modality is effective treatment for allergic rhinitis, allergic conjunctivitis, allergic asthma, and stinging insect hypersensitivity, with more limited evidence of benefit for atopic dermatitis and the oral allergy syndrome.
Not responsive to this intervention are chronic urticaria or angioedema, food allergies, and drug allergies (although temporary desensitization often can be achieved for medications that are important therapeutically).
Issued in 2010, This Stamp from France Honors the 100th Anniversary of Mother Teresa’s Birth.
The oral allergy syndrome is an issue that I can relate to, as cantaloupe and melon (which are cross-reactive with ragweed pollen) trigger a very uncomfortable oral and pharyngeal itching and burning sensation if I ingest them. Subcutaneous but not sublingual immunotherapy was shown to be effective in the oral allergy syndrome in one clinical trial.
Somewhat more controversial is pediatric chronic rhinosinusitis (CRS). This is a very well-established condition in adults, but its place with respect to children is more controversial. The precise relative contributions of anatomic, infectious, inflammatory, and environmental (smoke, other inhalants) factors in the pathogenesis of CRS (especially in children) remain unclear. The review here attempts to clarify this complex issue. Drug allergies and the evaluation of the child with recurrent infections are also reviewed in this issue.
The Larger Souvenir Sheet from the Caribbean Island Nation of Antigua and Barbuda, also Issued in 2010, Depicts Mother Teresa with Princess Diana, Queen Elizabeth, President Ronald Reagan, and Pope John Paul II.
There is a marked paucity of stamps that relate to the theme of allergic disorders. Therefore, I have selected stamps that honor the humanitarian Mother Teresa (1910–1997), who was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1979. The white stamp from France (see page 177) was issued in 2010 to honor the 100th anniversary of her birth. The larger souvenir sheet from the Caribbean island nation of Antigua and Barbuda was also issued in 2010 and depicts Mother Teresa with Princess Diana, Queen Elizabeth, President Ronald Reagan, and Pope John Paul II.
Mother Teresa’s birth name was Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu, and she was born in Uskub, Ottoman Empire (now Skopje, the capital of Macedonia) to parents from Shkoder, Albania. After her father died when she was 8 years old, she was raised Roman Catholic by her mother. At 18 years, she joined the Sisters of Loreto, Irish nuns who had missions in India.
After a few months of training in Dublin, she then taught at St. Mary’s High School in Calcutta from 1931–1948. In 1948, she received permission to leave teaching to work with the poor in Calcutta. In 1950 she was granted permission to start her own order, The Missionaries of Charity, which has now spread throughout the world. The charity’s purpose is to love and care for the poor and disadvantaged.