June is National Pet Adoption Month. We wanted to share some information on the topic of pet allergies with our readers so you know that being allergic doesn’t necessarily mean you have to live without pets, relegate it to the back yard, give it away, or worse, give it back to a shelter. Here are some facts that will help you live happily with your pets while coping with your pet allergy.
Are you certain it is a pet allergy?
Watery eyes, runny nose, general respiratory congestion, wheezing and coughing, and skin rash are the general symptoms. However, before deciding to part from your pet, there are various options that an allergist will be able to offer you.
First, you must determine if it is in fact a pet allergy. Symptoms are similar to those experienced by seasonal allergies, so you could just be reacting to the peak of pollen season, or to a new set of plants in your neighbor’s garden or neighborhood.
Second, initiate a treatment. FCAAC allergist, Dr. Zevy Landman, suggests treatment can range anywhere from over-the-counter antihistamines and decongestants, to immunotherapy (which is still the most effective option).
Third, some lifestyle changes are highly recommended: use HEPA filters for air conditioning and vacuum cleaners at home, use hypo-allergenic pillow covers and mattresses wash your personal bedding and your pet’s weekly at the highest temperature possible. Furthermore, some extra precautions should be taken with your pet’s grooming for optimal results: give your pet a weekly shampoo with a dander-reducing product, don’t allow your pet to get on beds or furniture, and keep litter boxes away from ac vents to prevent circulation of dander throughout the house.
My dog is hypo-allergenic. TRUE or FALSE?
FALSE: there’s no such thing as hypoallergenic pets. There are some breeds that produce significantly less amount of the offending protein in their dander, therefore causing less allergic reactions in people and making them appear “hypoallergenic”.
There is a difference between male and female pets. TRUE OR FALSE?
TRUE: it is proven that males produce more allergens than females; intact males produce more than neutered males and, with no proven explanation, dark cats produce more than light-colored ones.
If we have enticed you to adopt a pet, you may visit www.petfinder.com for listings on pets currently available for adoption.
From furry friends to pesky foes, at FCAAC we help our patients keep their allergies to insect bites, venom and/or pesticides under control. This topic was particularly of interest to us these past two weeks as there were various aerial fumigation done throughout South Florida to tackle the surplus of mosquitoes this rainy season.
Mosquitoes can be carriers of deadly diseases like the West Nile, Dengue Fever or Malaria. They attack normally at dawn and dusk and the best way to avoid them is to wear EPA-approved insect repellents. If you think you are a magnet for mosquitoes, it might not be a coincidence. You may be producing higher levels of the substances these critters are more drawn to like carbon dioxide and lactic acid.
To enjoy a mosquito-free evening picnic at the park there’s news of a free phone App (IOs and Android friendly) coming out soon called, Mosquito Buster App that emits high-frequency noise that repels mosquitoes and cannot be heard by a human ear. We’ll have to wait until it hits the market to try this our ourselves!
Fire ants, bees, wasps and yellow jackets inject their venom and can cause anaphylactic reactions to highly allergic individuals. These are not only opportunistic enough to build their nests next to flower pots, gazebo roofs and fruit plants, but also generally attack in swarms when they feel disturbed.
When sending your kids to outdoors sports or summer camps it is highly recommended you visit the allergist first; this will allow you to be equipped with a proper set of precautions given by your doctor, and avoid worrisome visits to the ER.
The USPTO (United States Patent & Trademark Office) has published our logo in the “Official Gazette Publication Confirmation”. In other words, effective March 6, 2012 another terrific Milestone (thanks to Facebook for the lexicon) has been set in FCAAC’s history; our logo is officially trademarked!
We are thrilled to show off the (R) symbol on our company logo:
By definition, a trademark or service mark is “a word, phrase, symbol, and/or design that identifies and distinguishes the source of the goods or services of one party from those of others.” (ref. www.uspto.gov). We went through a meticulous and diligent legal process that started for us with the transitional ℠ service mark, and culminated this past month with the official federal registration for “medical services and physician services” (R) symbol.
FCAAC didn’t decide to undertake this venture for a mere ego trip, although we already know we are the BEST (some self-confidence *insert smirk here*). In fact, federal registration has several advantages including a notice to the public of the registrant’s claim of ownership of the mark, a legal presumption of ownership nationwide, and the exclusive right to use the mark on or in connection with the goods or services set forth in the registration. So from here on any time we choose to use our FCAAC logo, we now do it with unique rights of distinctiveness in our industry. And that makes us happy and proud!
Soy is a legume (like peanut and lentils) however it is also an allergen; one of the eight foods that trigger 90% of all food allergy reactions. Soy protein isolate* can be found in protein bars, meal replacement shakes, bottled fruit drinks, soups, sauces, baked goods, breakfast cereals and some dietary supplements.
*Soy protein isolate is a highly refined or purified form of soy protein with a minimum protein content of 90% on a moisture-free basis. It is made from defatted soy flour which has had most of the non-protein components, fats and carbohydrates removed. Because of this, it has a neutral flavor and will cause less flatulence due to bacterial fermentation. (Wikipedia)
When suffering from any food allergies, reading food labels becomes a necessary habit; fine-tuning this skill will allow you to spot the allergens lurking within packaged foods and prevent unwanted allergic reactions. Knowing what to look for on labels is how you can find soy traces in:
Over 60% of foods available at grocery stores contain soy and soy byproducts as a substitute for proteins mostly used for vegan diets. Interestingly, soy beans are usually not the prime culprit of allergic reactions. It is the genetically modified (GM) ones containing anti-nutrients, which affect digestion and absorption of essential vitamins.
5 must-know rules on how to read a label:
- Avoid any product with the “soy” on the label.
- Ingredients to avoid: edamame, miso, natto, shoyu, soy (soy albumin, soy cheese, soy fiber, soy flour, soy grits, soy ice cream, soy milk, soy nuts, soy sprouts, soy yogurt), soya, soybean (curd, granules), soy protein (concentrate, hydrolyzed, isolate), soy sauce, tamari, tempeh, textured vegetable protein (TVP), tofu, vegetable broth.
- Stay away from Asian cuisine.
- Be aware that refined soybean oil is not an allergen. According to various researches most allergic patients can safely eat soy oil that has been highly refined (not cold pressed, expeller pressed, or extruded soybean oil).
- If you are allergic to soy you can safely eat soy lecithin.
As always, if you suspect that you or any family member experience symptoms of allergy to soy, please contact the allergist closest to you in order to get properly tested, diagnosed and treated.
In honor of National Peanut Month, we decided to forget for a moment about the peanut’s allergic attributes and celebrate it through the life and discoveries of George Washington Carver. This American scientist, educator, botanist and inventor was born into slavery in Missouri in the middle of the 19th century.
With his own merits, honors and dedication he acquired the best college education you could possibly achieve in those times. His main goal as a researcher was to find alternate crops from cotton for farming families to have different forms of nutrition and personal sustainability. His techniques were intended to replenish soils depleted by continuous planting of cotton. Among the most commonly known “cotton substitutes” are corn, soy, sweet potatoes and peanuts. With the implementation of new crops, his research laboratory promoted applications and recipes of them to stimulate the farm-based economy of the South.
Some Numbers and Achievements:
George Washington Carver published 44 practical bulletins for farmers with 100 food recipes containing peanuts.
100 are the accounted for products born from his research that were useful for the survival of farming families during the famine of the early 1920’s, when cotton crops where destroyed by an epidemic.
He was accepted as a member of the Royal Society of Arts in England; met with three American presidents (T. Roosevelt, C. Coolidge and F.D. Roosevelt) who recognized his results; studied with the Crown Prince of Sweden, and had a dedicated newspaper column called “Professor Carver’s Advice”.
At Florida Center For Allergy & Asthma Care we are serious about our patients’ well-being and education of all things allergy and asthma; however, taking into account that February was Black History Month and March is National Peanut Month we thought it appropriate to feature George Washington Carver and recognize his amazing efforts and contributions to our nations’ history.
If you are a parent of a child with food allergies you know how important and how tough it is to properly educate family, friends and teachers on this subject. Children who suffer from food allergies need to feel they are protected by their families, but also they must fully understand themselves the seriousness of their condition to properly navigate their food surroundings: birthday parties, school cafeteria, sleepovers, movie theaters, vacations, etc.
At Florida Center For Allergy & Asthma Care we are committed to our patients’ well-being and thorough education in order to avert dangerous circumstances for allergy and asthma sufferers. We proudly announce we are now the exclusive host of Support Group for Parents of Kids with Food Allergy, in both Miami-Dade and Broward counties, in collaboration with Baptist Health Outpatient Services. These support groups will be held the 1st Saturday of every month beginning on March 3rd, 2012 in the Baptist Children’s Diagnostic Center @ Country Walk (Miami-Dade); and beginning April 7th in the Baptist Medical Plaza @ Pembroke Pines (Broward).
This is a free service to the community so come and spend an hour with our own Dr. Ileana Rodicio and Dr. Sharlene Llanes to receive vital information, tips, suggestions and exchange ideas with other food allergy families. Everyone is invited, so spread the word !
Contact us for any additional information at firstname.lastname@example.org
It happened overnight, but the opening of office #17, North Miami Beach, feels like the blissful, nurtured birth of a newborn. The official birthdate is Monday February 13, 2012 and we can honestly say it’s been love at first sight for all of us at Florida Center For Allergy & Asthma Care.
We are honored to have been chosen by Dr. Krayanek, one of our former associates, to lead his office upon his retirement. We very much look forward to meeting his patients and helping them … Breathe Easy Once Again!
Despite the challenges of today’s economy, Florida Center For Allergy & Asthma Care continues its strategic growth and authoritative presence throughout South Florida. Our goal is to continue offering the best quality and friendly care to address the health needs of our community neighbors. Florida Center For Allergy & Asthma Care is the largest practice of its kind serving South Florida for the past 38 years!
Dr. Michael Pacin and Dr. Barry J. Mark will be the physicians at this new location.
Address: 16401 NW 2nd Avenue | Suite 201 | North Miami Beach, FL 33169
Phone: (305) 945-4131
We’ve been very lucky as winter this year in South Florida has been very mild. Only a couple of chilly weeks to show for it, really. Nonetheless, we’ve still had our good share of runny noses and frequent sneezes.
Is it a cold, allergy or sinusitis?
If your stuffy nose and cough lasts more than one or two weeks you most likely have more than just a cold or flu. Even though winter is many times overlooked by allergic rhinitis sufferers (aka hay fever – which means you’re allergic to dust, mold, pollen, mites or insect parts that linger in the air), you’d be surprised to know that winter can be just as bad or even worse than spring. With the arrival of low temperatures home heating systems kick-in, which stir all the dust settled in carpets, underneath beds and sofas, bookshelves, etc. And with all that flying around the air, and frosty weather keeping you indoors, those bothersome allergy symptoms (coughing, watery and itchy eyes, runny nose, sneezing) become more of a problem.
Allergic rhinitis puts you at higher risk of developing sinusitis. This is due to the fact that allergies can cause your sinuses and nasal passages to swell. This swelling prevents the sinus
cavities from draining properly, therefore increasing your chances of developing sinusitis or sinus infection.
True or False? Cold air triggers asthma symptoms.
True! Cold, dry air can be responsible for the onset of asthma symptoms like: wheezing, cough, chest tightness and shortness of breath. Viral and bacterial infections such as common colds and sinusitis, very frequent during winter time, can also trigger asthma symptoms and even severe asthma attacks. Asthma is caused by different factors in different people, which is why the smartest thing to do is to seek professional help and get personalized therapy and treatment.
True or False? It is safe for everybody to use over-the-counter (OTC) cold medications.
False! Asthma patients must always consult their allergist/immunologist before deciding to use medications other than those prescribed by their doctor, including OTC cold medicine. Many drugs have contra indicatory reactions when combined, so asthma patients must use extra precaution. For example, decongestants can cause palpitations when used with standard asthma medications such as, bronchodilators.
If you have never been tested for allergies but suspect you might be showing symptoms of an allergy, it is time to make an appointment with one of our board certified allergists. Let us improve your quality of life with customized treatment plans, so you can breathe easy once again!