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Ask the Allergist

Ask the Allergist

Can a Child With a Tree Nut Allergy Touch Acorns?

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If a child is allergic to tree nuts, are they able to touch acorns? Are they just avoided to be safe or are they causes of allergic reactions?

Acorns are botanical nuts of oak trees. They are not a common allergen. Anaphylaxis (a severe allergic reaction) due to contact with acorns would be very rare. There are case reports in the medical literature of allergic reactions after eating acorns. This was thought to be caused by cross-reactivity due to a pollen allergy and not due to nut allergy.

Contact with acorns would pose a low risk of systemic reactions, even in someone with a tree nut allergy. Washing with soap and water would get rid of the allergen.

Look here and here for more information on tree nut avoidance.

Allergy, Anaphylaxis, Tree Nut Allergy
Answered by

Douglas T. Johnston D.O. FAAAAI, FACAAI

Reviewed and Answered

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