The First Approved Peanut Allergy Treatment

By April 9, 2020December 31st, 2020Employers Pharmacy
A young girl makes a peanut butter sandwich

Over the past two decades, the prevalence of peanut allergy has tripled. In fact, peanut allergy is the most common food allergy in children, affecting up to 2.5 percent of the pediatric population. If you have kids, you can probably think of a few places where peanut products are altogether banned as a result (so long, PB&J).

A peanut allergy attack can result in symptoms ranging from skin reactions, like hives, to anaphylaxis, a life‑threatening whole‑body response to an allergen. Unless treated immediately with epinepherine, anaphylaxis can be fatal.

Aside from the health risk it poses, a peanut allergy can also result in significant out-of-pocket expenses to parents and medical costs to employers and payers.

FDA Approves Novel Treatment for Peanut Allergy

In early 2020, the FDA approved a novel treatment for peanut allergy: Palforzia. This is the first FDA‑approved treatment for patients who have a peanut allergy.

Palforzia is a peanut‑derived oral immunotherapy administered in very small doses, with gradual dose increases intended to elevate the patient’s tolerance to a maintenance dose. The maintenance dose will provide protection from potentially life‑threatening exposures to peanut allergens.

A second treatment for peanut allergy, Viaskin, still awaits FDA approval. Viaskin is a transdermal patch immunotherapy that provides continuous antigen exposure at the same dose.

How Independence Blue Cross Helps You Manage Medications

Independence Blue Cross is committed to providing access to the latest FDA-approved treatments available so our members can stay as healthy and productive as possible while managing the overall cost of care. This includes access to treatments like Palforzia.

To learn more about Independence Blue Cross prescription drug programs, please reach out to us.

 

Lisa Liburd

About Lisa Liburd

I joined Independence Blue Cross in 2003 as a clinical pharmacist and have served as the Director of Clinical Pharmacy since 2014. My work here focuses on managing our drug formularies in a way that is both cost-effective and provides our members access to the medications they need. I earned a Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD) degree from the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia and an MBA from Drexel University.