One of the most common food allergies in adults is shellfish – which is a separate category than another common allergen, finned fish.

There are two groups of shellfish:

  1. Mollusks
  2. Crustaceans

Crustaceans are considered one of the top nine food allergens, while mollusks are not.

Crustaceans include:

  • Crab
  • Lobster
  • Crawfish
  • Shrimp
  • Krill
  • Prawns

Because of their top nine designation by the FDA, crustaceans are required to be identified on food labels, but any shellfish under the mollusks category do not have the same requirement.

While someone may be allergic to crab but not lobster, it can be difficult to tell which products can be safely consumed as cross contact may occur. For most, it may be suggested to avoid all shellfish and to also carry an epinephrine auto injector in case of accidental exposure.

Providers at AAOL take it a step further and start a food allergy treatment plan by completing a thorough history, exam, and allergy testing to determine which shellfish – and other allergens – a patient is allergic to, and at what specific level.

After diagnosis, they may recommend allergy drops following The La Crosse Method™ Protocol – a personalized liquid dose of tiny amounts of your problem allergens. Throughout treatment, the amounts of allergens are gradually and safely increased until the body learns not to react when exposed to them.

The goal of treatment may be different for each patient depending on the severity of their allergies. Some may be able to avoid life-threatening reactions if accidentally exposed, while others can reintroduce shellfish and other problem foods into their diet. Retesting and continued monitoring throughout treatment keeps patients safe and on track.

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Success Stories

“I had a lot of rashes and I wouldn’t be able to keep anything down when I ate. I would scratch myself until I would bleed. [I was allergic to] Wheat, eggs, milk, tree nuts, peanuts, a lot of like dust, and some trees, and then dogs and cats. “Well, today I figured out that…
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