Two of the antibodies involved in allergic reactions are immunoglobulin E (IgE) and immunoglobulin G (IgG).
IgE antibody production occurs right after ingestion or inhalation of an allergen (ie. a child eats a peanut and has an anaphylactic reaction), and is called a Type I immediate hypersensitivity reaction. On the other hand, IgG antibodies are produced for several hours or days after exposure to an allergen and are called Type III delayed hypersensitivity reactions. Dr. Elliott tends to do more IgG allergy testing in office to determine hidden food allergies.
In a Type III delayed hypersensitivity reaction, IgG forms an immune complex with the allergen/antigen (common examples are wheat and dairy foods) which causes an immune reaction wherever the immune complex is deposited, thus resulting in symptoms. Depending on which tissues are involved, deposition of these IgG-antigen complexes may result in the following health concerns:
- High blood pressure
- Recurrent infections
- Skin rashes
- Joint aches and pains
- Brain fog
- Runny nose
- Digestive complaints
A common complaint in infants and toddlers is eczema; contributing factors are food allergies (most commonly milk, eggs, wheat, citrus fruit and sugar), an imbalance in the bacteria in the gut, constipation, antibiotic use, and essential fatty acid or other nutrient deficiency. Determining food allergies and changing the underlying causes can go a long way in clearing children’s eczema.
IgG food sensitivities are difficult to diagnose because reactions do not occur until hours or days after ingestion of an allergen. This makes it extremely tough to determine which foods are causing the problems. In-office blood spot testing (finger-prick) provides a simple and convenient way to uncover potential causes of suspected allergic reactions.
Once we’ve determined the food allergies, they are eliminated from the diet for a specific period of time while implementing a healing protocol with the eventual goal of being able to reintroduce the foods in the future with minimal or no reaction.
Dr. Elliott is available by email or phone to answer any questions you may have.