Methods: Community pediatric care providers in the Washington, DC Metro area listened to an educational lecture. Participants completed a pre-test to determine baseline knowledge and practices in FA.
Results: The study population included 39 health care providers of whom 43% were in practice for over 20 years, 87% in private practice, 77% pediatricians, and 77% females. They saw an average of 5 FA patients per week; 79% ordered FA laboratory tests. Although most self-reported being at least somewhat comfortable at interpreting labs (85%) and managing FAs (79%), knowledge and practice deficits were identified. About 59% of providers incorrectly believed that panel testing should be used for FA diagnosis and 15% recommended avoidance of foods for a positive IgE despite current food tolerance. Eighty-two percent of providers incorrectly would recommend that patients eliminate foods that cause AD flares. Although 74% knew to prescribe epinephrine for FA patients, only 25% knew to provide a FA Action Plan. Most recommended early introduction of milk products (79%), egg (72%), peanut (67%) and seafood (54%) between ages 5-12 months. In a multivariate regression analysis, demographics were not associated with these findings.
Conclusions: These findings confirm a knowledge gap between new FA recommendations and current practice, which indicates a need for a FA educational intervention for pediatric providers.