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Case Report


Anaphylaxis due to Brazil nut skin testing in a walnut-allergic subject


G. Senna1, P. Bonadonna1, M. Crivellaro1, M. Schiappoli1, G. Passalacqua2

1 Allergy Service, Verona General Hospital, Verona, Italy
2 Allergy & Respiratory Diseases, DIMI, University of Genoa, Italy

J Invest Allergol Clin Immunol 2005; Vol. 15(3): 225-227



The diagnosis and management of nut allergy can be difficult because of the possible severity of the clinical manifestations and the cross reactivity between different species. We report a case of anaphylaxis due to skin testing in a young adult with clinically ascertained walnut allergy. After an episode of anaphylaxis due to walnut ingestion, a routine diagnostic workup was carried out, involving skin prick test with commercial extracts, prick by prick with fresh food and CAP-RAST assay for different nuts. Immediately after pricking with fresh Brazil nut, a severe episode of anaphylaxis occurred, that required epinephrine and intravenous steroids. The subject had never eaten Brazil nut before. Therefore we hypothesize a cross reactivity effect, since this phenomenon
is well known for tree nuts. Our case suggests that in vivo diagnosis, especially if fresh nuts are used, should be performed only if adequate equipment to treat anaphylaxis is available.

Key words: anaphylaxis, skin testing, walnut, Brazil nut.