Volume 6 Supplement 2

Canadian Society of Allergy and Clinical Immunology Annual Scientific Meeting 2010

Open Access

Flax seed allergy in children: an emerging allergen?

  • Andrew O’Keefe1Email author,
  • Sandeep Kapur2,
  • Gregory Rex2 and
  • Wade Watson2
Allergy, Asthma & Clinical Immunology20106(Suppl 2):P6

DOI: 10.1186/1710-1492-6-S2-P6

Published: 4 November 2010

Background

Flax is a plant that is widely cultivated and has multiple uses. The seed has been increasingly used in food, and the fibers are used in textiles. Oils have also been extracted from the seed for use as a laxative and in industrial preparations. Allergic reactions to flax seed ingestion as well as linseed oil (flaxseed oil) ingestion have been described in the literature in adults (1-5), but not in children.

Material and methods

We report four cases of flax seed allergy in children.

Results

See table 1
Table 1

Table 1

Case

Age

Gender

Multiple food allergies?

Food containing flax seed: symptoms

Skin test to flax

Open challenge

1

1y5m

F

no

granola bar: urticaria, angioedema

5mm

not done

2

9y

M

yes

muffin: oral “tingling”

4mm

oral pruritus, throat clearing

3

5y

M

yes

bread: vomiting/urticaria (two episodes)

7mm

not done

4

8y

M

yes

fruit smoothie: angioedema of lips

same fruit smoothie without flax seed before and since: no symptoms

pending

pending

Conclusions

Few cases of flax seed allergy have been described in the literature. As the use of flax seed in foods becomes more prevalent, this will likely become a more important cause of allergic reactions in the future.

Authors’ Affiliations

(1)
Department of Pediatrics, Memorial University
(2)
Department of Pediatrics, Dalhousie University

References

  1. Alonso L, Navarro JA, Garces M, Carretero P: Anaphylaxis caused by linseed (flaxseed) intake. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. 1996, 98 (2): 469-470. 10.1016/S0091-6749(96)70175-6.View ArticlePubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Black WC: Flax hypersensitiveness. JAMA. 1930, 94: 1064-View ArticleGoogle Scholar
  3. Grant LR: A report of six cases of flax seed sensitization with review of the literature. The Journal of Allergy. 1931, 3: 469-477. 10.1016/S0021-8707(32)90182-8.View ArticleGoogle Scholar
  4. Lezaun A: Anaphylaxis from linseed. Allergy. 1998, 53: 105-106. 10.1111/j.1398-9995.1998.tb03785.x.View ArticlePubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Leon F, Rodriguez M, Cuevas M: The major allergen of linseed. Allergy. 2002, 57 (10): 968-10.1034/j.1398-9995.2002.23832_14.x.View ArticlePubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright

© O’Keefe et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. 2010

This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd.

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