Health A to Z – Asthma and Allergy Topics

Browse Allergy and Asthma Topics and Overlap Conditions

Here you will find:

  • overlap conditions which may appear to be allergy and asthma, but are not.
  • topics here that go by alternative names or acronyms – such as eczema and atopic dermatitis, or OAS and Oral Allergy Syndrome
  • topics that pertain to allergy and immunology generally – such as the atopic march

You can also check out our news section for more topics, or do a site search.

AERD:

Aspirin-exacerbated respiratory disease (AERD), also known as Samter’s Triad, is a chronic disease that consists of three conditions: asthma, nasal polyps, and sensitivity to aspirin and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. Learn about AERD symptoms, diagnosis, treatment and medications to avoid, plus get an FAQ on everything AERD.

Allergic March:

The allergic march (or atopic march) describes the progression of allergic diseases from infancy to adulthood. It often starts with eczema and moves on to food allergies, allergic rhinitis and asthma. Learn about whether it’s possible to halt the allergic march and how to develop a strong immune system.

Allergies:

 

Allergy & Asthma at School:

Parents and schools must partner to care for students with asthma and allergies. Allergy & Asthma Network provides recommendations so that parents and schools are prepared for students with these conditions. Find out how to handle changes in a child’s condition during the school year and determine what measures should be taken.

Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Deficiency:

Alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency is a rare inherited condition that can lead to serious lung disease in adults. It occurs when there is an abnormal level of the protein alpha-1 antitrypsin in the blood. Learn about alpha-1 symptoms, treatments, and patient resources.

Anaphylaxis:

Anaphylaxis, or anaphylactic shock, is a life-threatening allergic reaction that affects more than one organ system. Symptoms may include hives or a skin rash, a drop in blood pressure and narrowing of airways in response to exposure of an allergen – most commonly food, venom, latex, and medication. Get the full list of symptoms, treatment options, instructions on epinephrine injections, and FAQs.

Asthma:

Asthma is a chronic lung disease that causes episodes of coughing, wheezing, chest tightness and shortness of breath. Learn what causes asthma and how it affects the lungs, what allergens trigger symptoms, treatments and medications including quick-relief and long-acting inhalers, what to do if you experience an asthma attack, and how to manage the disease with an Asthma Action Plan.

Atopic Dermatitis (Eczema):

Atopic dermatitis is a form of eczema, a chronic inflammatory skin condition that involves itchy red patches on the skin, dry and scaly skin, thick skin, and open, oozing, crusty sores. Get information on symptom triggers, diagnosis, treatments and how to live well with eczema.

Bronchiectasis:

Bronchiectasis is a rare disease in which the walls of the airways become thick and enlarged due to scarring from inflammation and repeat infections. Learn about symptoms, diagnosis, treatments, medications and patient resources.

Cat Allergy:

Allergic reactions to cats and other furry pets are caused by pet dander, proteins found in flecks of the pet’s skin, saliva and urine. These can suspend in the air and settle in your inside environment, triggering allergy and asthma symptoms. Find out more about pet allergy symptoms, prevention and immunotherapy.

Celiac Disease:

When people with celiac disease eat a meal containing gluten (wheat), their body is unable to fully absorb the nutrients. This can severely damage the lining of the small intestine and lead to severe symptoms. Learn about celiac disease symptoms, diagnosis, treatment and patient resources. Also, get a list of common foods that contain gluten.

Chronic Idiopathic Urticaria:

People who develop hives that come and go for six weeks or longer – and there’s no known trigger – are diagnosed with Chronic Idiopathic Urticaria (CIU), or Chronic Spontaneous Urticaria. Find out what causes CIU, how it’s diagnosed, the impact on quality of life and treatment. Recommendations for healthcare professionals, too.

Cold Urticaria:

Cold Urticaria is a chronic skin condition that occurs after sudden exposure to anything cold. Symptoms include swelling, itchy red skin and welts, fainting and more. Get information on what causes cold urticaria, symptoms and treatment. Plus, hear from the mom of a 14-year-old cold urticaria patient.

COPD:

Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is an umbrella term to describe a series of progressive lung diseases characterized by difficulty breathing. The two main COPD diseases are emphysema and chronic bronchitis. Learn what causes COPD, common symptoms to watch for and treatment options including pulmonary rehab. Plus, watch Patient Learning Pathways videos that explain the disease in basic terms.

COVID-19:

Our COVID-19 Information Center offers information on the coronavirus pandemic: what people living with asthma, allergies and related diseases need to know, why face masks and social distancing are important, and the latest on COVID-19 testing and vaccines. Check out our FAQs, infographics, webinars, videos and mental health tools.

COVID-19 School Resources:

Allergy & Asthma Network offers trustworthy, evidence-based guidance on managing COVID-19, asthma and allergies in the school setting. Whether you’re a parent, teacher, school nurse or administrator, get reliable information to help you navigate the school year and keep children healthy. Recommendations include indoor ventilation, reopening plans, food services, staff training, and more.

Dog Allergy:

Allergic reactions to dogs and other furry pets are caused by pet dander, proteins found in flecks of the pet’s skin, saliva and urine. These can suspend in the air and settle in your inside environment, triggering allergy and asthma symptoms. Learn more about pet allergy symptoms, prevention and immunotherapy.

Eczema:

Eczema is a chronic inflammatory skin condition that involves itchy red patches on the skin, dry and scaly skin, thick skin, and open, oozing, crusty sores. Get information on symptom triggers, diagnosis, treatments and how to live well with eczema.

Eosinophilic Esophagitis:

Eosinophilic Esophagitis (EoE) is a chronic condition that occurs when an increased number of inflammatory cells called eosinophils cause swelling in the esophagus, making it difficult to swallow. Learn what causes EoE, symptoms, diagnosis, treatment options and patient resources.

Food Allergy:

A food allergy is an immune system response that occurs soon after a person eats a certain food. Learn the common food allergens, how food allergies are diagnosed, why it’s important to keep a food diary, what symptoms to watch for, and more. Recommendations are also provided for dining out and traveling with food allergies and treating a food allergy reaction.

Food Intolerance:

Food intolerance involves the digestion system – not the immune system – so it is different from food allergy. When a person eats a meal that causes food intolerance, it means the food is not broken down correctly in the body and causes stomach distress. Learn more about the difference between food intolerance and food allergy, some common foods that cause food intolerance, and treatment.

FPIES:

Food Protein-Induced Enterocolitis Syndrome (FPIES) is a type of severe food reaction that affects infants and young children. It is a non-IgE-mediated reaction to a food protein and symptoms occur in the gastrointestinal system. Learn about FPIES food triggers, symptoms, diagnosis, management and patient resources.

GERD:

Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) is a common medical condition where acid from the stomach flows up to the esophagus (food pipe) and trachea (windpipe), causing irritation and inflammation. It can trigger or worsen respiratory symptoms in people with asthma and COPD. Find out how to manage GERD and what foods to avoid.

Health Disparities:

Allergy & Asthma Network spotlights health disparities, equity and social determinants of health, with a focus on how it impacts African American, Hispanic, American Indian and Alaskan Natives communities. Information is available on how health literacy is connected to health disparities. Learn how COVID-19 has impacted communities of color and the importance of diversity in research.

Hereditary Angioedema:

Hereditary angioedema (HAE) is a rare and potentially life-threatening genetic disease that causes severe and painful swelling (edema) in the hands, feet, arms, legs, face or gastrointestinal tract. Find out how HAE is diagnosed, its common triggers, treatments and patient resources.

Immunotherapy for Allergies:

Allergen immunotherapy is a treatment in which patients are given the food they are allergic to, starting with a tiny amount and then gradually larger amounts. This helps build tolerance to the allergen to reduce or eliminate allergy symptoms. Learn which allergens can be treated with immunotherapy, how it works, the difference between allergy shots and tablets, and how to decide if immunotherapy is right for you.

Infections and Viruses:

Common infections and viruses include COVID-19, influenza (the flu), pneumonia, bronchitis and Legionnaires’ disease. Learn how they can worsen respiratory diseases. Get information on the importance of the flu vaccine and when to get one.

Interstitial Lung Diseases:

Interstitial Lung Diseases make up more than 200 lung disorders that primarily affect the tissues around air sacs (interstitium). Many of these rare diseases lead to respiratory symptoms and can decrease lung volume and function, making it difficult to breathe. Some of the diseases examined here include chronic eosinophilic pneumonia, Churg-Strauss Syndrome, LAM, idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, pneumoconiosis and sarcoidosis.

Latex Allergy:

Latex allergy is a reaction to proteins from the Hevea brasiliensis rubber tree sap, milky fluid used to manufacture more than 40,000 products including surgical gloves, balloons, elastic bands, pacifiers and garden hoses. Learn about the different types of latex allergies, symptoms, diagnosis, prevention and treatment of a severe allergic reaction. Find out what products contain latex and what foods are cross-reactive with latex.

Mast Cell Diseases:

Mast cells protect us from germs and parasites. Problems can occur with abnormal and/or overly active mast cells. Mast cell diseases (such as mastocytosis, mast cell activation syndrome and hereditary alpha-tryptasemia) are rare and may include unexplained skin rashes, abdominal pain and bloating, or severe reactions to foods, medicines, or insect stings. Learn how mast cell diseases are treated and hear from a patient diagnosed with mastocytosis.

Nasal Polyps:

Nasal polyps are growths that develop inside your nose after inflammation due to a cold or the flu, allergens and irritants, sinus infections or drug sensitivity. Learn the common symptoms of nasal polyps, how they’re treated, and steps you can take to prevent them.

Oral Allergy Syndrome:

Oral Allergy Syndrome (OAS), also known as pollen-food allergy syndrome, occurs when people with pollen allergies develop symptoms after they eat botanically related fruits and vegetables. Check out a list of foods that can trigger OAS and learn more about symptoms and treatment.

PANDAS:

Pediatric Autoimmune Neuropsychiatric Disorders Associated with Streptococcal Infections (PANDAS) occurs when a child’s body reacts to a strep throat infection by attacking some of the child’s own cells (including brain cells). It can induce behavior changes in children. Learn how PANDAS is diagnosed and find out how it’s treated.

Patient Learning Pathways:

Our video series spotlights allergy, asthma, anaphylaxis and COPD management and treatment.

Peanut Allergy Immunotherapy Treatment:

Peanut allergy immunotherapy typically involves giving a patient a tiny amount of peanut and then gradually larger amounts so their bodies build tolerance to the allergen. Learn about the different types of peanut allergy immunotherapy, how to evaluate the pros and cons of each, and how to determine if the treatment is right for you or your child.

PIDD:

Primary Immunodeficiency Diseases (PIDD) are a group of more than 300 disorders in which part of the immune system is absent or not functioning properly. It results in patients being prone to illnesses and repeat infections. PIDD is usually an inherited condition. Learn about PIDD symptoms, diagnosis and treatment and get answers to FAQs.

Pollen Allergy:

Pollen is a fine powder released by trees, grasses and weeds. It’s also an allergen that can cause allergy symptoms. Learn about the types of pollen, symptoms and treatment options. Find out how to prepare for your pollen season and the impact of pollen on people with asthma.

Primary Immunodeficiency Diseases:

 Primary Immunodeficiency Diseases (PIDD) are a group of more than 300 disorders in which part of the immune system is absent or not functioning properly. It results in patients being prone to illnesses and repeat infections. PIDD is usually an inherited condition. Learn about PIDD symptoms, diagnosis and treatment and get answers to FAQs.

Psoriasis:

Psoriasis is a skin condition in which new skin cells grow more often than usual and then pile up on existing ones, resulting in thick, scaly, itchy patches of skin (plaques). Find out the types of psoriasis, what causes it, how it’s diagnosed, and treatment options.

Pulmonary Hypertension:

Pulmonary hypertension (PH) is high blood pressure in the lungs. When vessels in the lungs become narrow, stiff or blocked, pressure builds up, causing the heart to work harder to pump blood through the lungs. Get information on PH diagnosis, symptoms, treatment and patient resources.

Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV):

Respiratory viruses are common in children under 5. RSV tends to start in children as an upper respiratory infection, but it can quickly spread down the nose and throat into the lower respiratory tract, causing inflammation. Learn more about RSV symptoms, treatment and prevention.

Schools: Allergy & Asthma:

Parents and schools must partner to care for students with asthma and allergies. Allergy & Asthma Network provides recommendations so that parents and schools are prepared for students with these conditions. Find out how to handle changes in a child’s condition during the school year and determine what measures should be taken.

Shared Decision Making:

Healthcare works best when doctors and patients come together to arrive at an evidence-based treatment plan. It balances risks and results with a patient’s preferences and values. This is called Shared Decision Making (SDM). Learn about the benefits of SDM, its role in personalized medicine, and the different types of SDM tools for people with asthma, allergies and atopic dermatitis.

Sinusitis:

Sinusitis occurs when sinuses become congested, causing nasal tissues to become inflamed and swollen. As mucus accumulates in the sinuses, it provides a breeding ground for germs to grow, and infection sets in. Learn more about sinusitis symptoms, treatment, prevention, and its presence in young children.

Sleep Apnea:

Sleep apnea occurs when muscles relax during sleep, causing soft tissue in the throat to break down and block the upper airway. This can result in a less airflow and oxygen making its way to the lungs, causing episodes of gasping, gagging, choking and coughing. Learn about sleep apnea symptoms, diagnosis and treatments, as well as its impact on people with asthma.

Vocal Cord Dysfunction:

Vocal Cord Dysfunction (VCD) occurs when your vocal cords close instead of opening as you inhale. Symptoms can look and feel a lot like asthma. Get information on how VCD is diagnosed, common triggers, symptoms and treatment. Find out the difference between VCD and asthma.