The Burden of Peanut Allergy in Adolescent Patients

Unrecognizable little boy sits at a table eating peanuts

The results of the Peanut Allergy Burden Study (PABS), which analyzed how adolescent patients and caregivers are affected by peanut allergy, were published as part of the AAAAI Annual Meeting.

The PABS online survey was distributed to adolescents aged 13 to 17 years with self-reported, provider-diagnosed peanut allergy. Data collection included medical and treatment history as well as validated Pediatric Quality of Life Inventory (PedsQL), measured on a 100-point scale where higher scores are better.

The mean age of the 102 adolescents with peanut allergy who completed PABS was 14.7 years; 55.9% of respondents were male, and 62.8% were white. The mean PedsQL total score was 48.8. The highest mean subscale score was physical (53.6), followed by social (48.2), school (46.0), psychosocial (44.5), and emotional (43.0). PedsQL scores from a general population of more than 5,900 adolescents aged eight to 16 years were significantly higher, ranging from 78.2 to 87.2; the difference exceeded the minimum clinically important difference. Factors associated with significantly lower PedsQL total scores included experiencing at least one peanut allergy-related reaction in the past year (P=0.008), receiving clinician intervention for at least one peanut allergy reaction in the past year (P<0.001), being “not at all” to “somewhat satisfied” with current approaches to peanut allergy reaction prevention (P=0.012), believing peanut allergy limited day-to-day life “somewhat” to “completely” (P=0.013), and reporting a “great” to “100% chance” of not effectively dealing with a reaction (P<0.001).

The researchers concluded that adolescents with peanut allergy had significantly poorer outcomes compared with peers in their age group. “Total scores were significantly different between subgroups defined by recent allergic reaction/need for clinician intervention, satisfaction with reaction prevention, perceived limitations on day-to-day life, and concern about their ability to deal with a reaction,” they summarized.