The first of its kind in Illinois, the Food Allergy Program seeks to improve the lives of children and families affected by food allergy. Our experts provide evaluation services and comprehensive treatment, including skin prick testing, food challenges, oral immunotherapy, and education on food avoidance and managing allergic reactions.
About Food Allergies
Food allergy is caused by an immune response that occurs after exposure to a specific food. When exposed, the immune system overreacts by producing antibodies called Immunoglobulin E (IgE) which ultimately cause an allergic reaction. An allergic reaction can cause many different symptoms. These symptoms can include hives and itching on the skin or symptoms throughout the entire body (anaphylaxis) including difficulty breathing, low blood pressure and possibly, death. Learn more about The Science of Anaphylaxis.
We take a family-centered approach to care and believe the best results occur when the parents, child and healthcare provider work together, each sharing their area of knowledge to help diagnose and manage the food allergy. Partnering with your family helps us to best understand the types of reactions your child has to certain foods; the relationship between timing and reactions; and your child's personal and family history. Knowing your child and your family allows us to better help you as you positively navigate a life with food allergy.
Our integrated team includes physicians, pediatric nurse practitioners and pediatric nursing staff to care for children with food allergies. Institute leadership is provided by Jacqueline A. Pongracic, MD, Head of Allergy and Immunology. Dr. Pongracic is board-certified in allergy and immunology and internal medicine.
Your support is vital in helping us continue to make a difference in the lives of patients and families. Lurie Children's relies on philanthropic funding to enhance its programs, services and research for children. To learn more, please e-mail the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago Foundation at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 312.227.7500.