This guideline covers assessing and managing food allergy in children and young people under 19. It aims to improve symptoms such as faltering growth and eczema by offering advice on how to identify food allergy and when to refer to secondary or specialist care.
The guideline does not cover reactions to food that are due to intolerance (for example, intolerance to lactose in dairy products) rather than allergy.
This guideline includes recommendations on:
- assessment and taking a clinical history
- diagnosing IgE-mediated food allergy
- diagnosing non-IgE-mediated food allergy
- providing information and support
- referral to secondary or specialist care
- alternative diagnostic tools
Who is it for?
- Healthcare professionals
- Children and young people with food allergy and their families and carers
Is this guideline up to date?
We checked this guideline in February 2014. We identified no major studies that will affect the recommendations in the next 3 to 5 years.
Next review: February 2019
Guideline development process
This guideline was previously called food allergy in children and young people: diagnosis and assessment of food allergy in children and young people in primary care and community settings.
The recommendations in this guideline represent the view of NICE, arrived at after careful consideration of the evidence available. When exercising their judgement, professionals are expected to take this guideline fully into account, alongside the individual needs, preferences and values of their patients or service users. The application of the recommendations in this guideline is not mandatory and the guideline does not override the responsibility of healthcare professionals to make decisions appropriate to the circumstances of the individual patient, in consultation with the patient and/or their carer or guardian.
Local commissioners and/or providers have a responsibility to enable the guideline to be applied when individual health professionals and their patients or service users wish to use it. They should do so in the context of local and national priorities for funding and developing services, and in light of their duties to have due regard to the need to eliminate unlawful discrimination, to advance equality of opportunity and to reduce health inequalities. Nothing in this guideline should be interpreted in a way that would be inconsistent with compliance with those duties.
Commissioners and providers have a responsibility to promote an environmentally sustainable health and care system and should assess and reduce the environmental impact of implementing NICE recommendations wherever possible.