Appearance of food-dependent exercise-induced anaphylaxis as an inflammatory disease: a pediatric case report and differential diagnosis

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Antonio Scarcella
Simona Barni
Mattia Giovannini
Lucrezia Sarti
Giulia Liccioli
Erika Paladini
Leonardo Tomei
Sandra Trapani
Francesca Mori


anaphylaxis, exercise, food-dependent exercise-induced anaphylaxis, wheat-dependent exercise-induced anaphylaxis


Anaphylaxis is the most serious of all allergic reactions. Despite advances in the knowledge of anaphylaxis, its clinical manifestations continue to be under-recognized. Indeed, proper diagnosis of anaphylaxis is often missed, and the treatment is delayed. The underlying causes are still under investigation globally. Inflammation represents the cornerstone of pathophysiology of anaphylaxis. Food-dependent exercise-induced anaphylaxis (FDEIA) is a rare clinical manifestation characterized by a chronological sequence in which food ingestion followed by physical exercise leads to anaphylaxis. Its mechanisms are yet to be fully explained. We report the case of a 14-year-old Chinese male who lost consciousness while undergoing physical activity at school. Several differential diagnoses were considered such as hypovolemic shock, septic shock, anaphylactic shock or neurological adverse event. Finally, the diagnosis of FDEIA was made. This case highlights the difficulties in diagnosing FDEIA and its management, especially when the clinical history is not complete and detailed.

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