Last November, the story of Quebec teen, Christina Desforges, made headlines around the world when reports suggested that she had died after kissing her boyfriend who had eaten peanut butter earlier that day. Desforges, who was peanut allergic, was also asthmatic. Her friends were unaware of her food allergy and that she carried an EpiPen. In May, Quebec Coroner Michel Miron held a press conference to share findings of his investigation and made several recommendations which underscore the need for greater understanding about the risks of asthma and food allergies.
New guidelines released in February by Canada’s leading allergy organizations spell out the gold standard for treating life-threatening anaphylactic reactions, and outline the preventive strategies that should be in place in schools, camps, and similar settings.
- Dr. Susan Waserman, MSc, M.D., FRCPC, Associate Professor of Medicine, Division of Clinical Immunology & Allergy at McMaster University. She is President of the Canadian Society of Allergy and Clinical Immunology and medical advisor to Anaphylaxis Canada.