Homerton doctors want to find Oral Allergy Syndrome and Pollen Food Syndrome sufferers for trial

Homerton University Hospital in Homerton Row.

Homerton University Hospital in Homerton Row. - Credit: Archant

Doctors from Homerton Hospital’s allergy clinic want to talk to hay fever sufferers who get an itching or burning sensation in the mouth when they fresh fruit.

A research trial is being launched with colleagues in Brighton to explore the potential benefits of using established hay fever treatments to reduce the effects of an allergy which causes discomfort when eating fruit.

The allergy clinic team sees people every week who suffer from Oral Allergy Syndrome (OAS), which is also known as Pollen Food Syndrome (PFS).

Symptoms include mild to intense itching and/or swelling of all or part of the lips, tongue, mouth or throat, which can sometimes be severe and include nausea and vomiting.

It usually occurs in people who are allergic to pollen from trees, grasses or weeds, and often affects hay fever sufferers although non-sufferers also get OAS.

Consultant nurse, Andrew Williams, said: “Along with colleagues throughout Europe, we have noticed that when we treat severe pollen hay fever with a specialist treatment called immunotherapy, patients previously unable to eat fruit report that they are able to eat fruits again.

“A scientific link between this treatment for severe hay fever and loss of OAS has not been established to date and we are starting this research trial to confirm if there is a hidden link,” he added.

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Potential volunteers should call 020 8510 7643 or email andrew.williams@homerton.nhs.uk.