World Allergy Organization Highlights Global Allergy Impact

    MILWAUKEE, Wisconsin, June 17 /CNW/ -

    - First World Allergy Report Calls for Urgent Worldwide Collaboration to
    Tackle Global Increase in Allergies and Allergic Diseases

    The World Allergy Organization (WAO) will publish its first Report on the
extent of allergy and chronic respiratory diseases worldwide on the 18 June
2008 and has called for immediate collaboration to tackle the current
escalation in allergy cases. In the last 20-30 years, the prevalence of
allergic diseases has increased significantly - a trend that shows no signs of
abating. It is estimated that 400 million people worldwide experience allergic
rhinitis and 300 million people worldwide have asthma(1) with estimated
economic costs exceeding those of tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS combined.(2) One
of the most alarming findings from the report is that while the incidence of
allergy and associated diseases has increased significantly, the number of
healthcare professionals trained in the diagnosis and treatment of allergy has
decreased, leaving many patients undiagnosed and untreated. The State of World
Allergy Report is a first yet fundamental step towards addressing this
    Professor G. Walter Canonica, President of the WAO, comments on the
findings of the Report: "This first State of World Allergy Report presents a
concerning picture of the rising prevalence of all types of allergic diseases,
such as allergic asthma, food allergies, anaphylaxis and rhinoconjunctivitis.
However, healthcare resources are not increasing commensurately; there is a
pressing need for improved access worldwide to licensed allergy medications.
The WAO is at the forefront to analyse, address and respond to these

    -   Allergies are a major problem in the 21st Century - it is predicted
        to worsen as this century moves forward (1)

    -   Due to a changing world climate, higher standards of hygiene and
        rapid industrialisation of developing nations, allergies are becoming
        more prevalent, more complex and more aggressive, with patients
        frequently suffering multiple allergic disorders that are no longer
        confined to specific seasons or locations and may be caused by a
        multitude of natural and synthetic substances not in our environment
        20 years ago

    -   Environmental changes have a significant impact on patients' quality
        of life and work productivity

    -   Allergic diseases are one of the most frequent reasons for patients
        to seek medical care

    Professor Canonica highlights the role of the WAO in addressing the global
allergy situation: "The WAO is determined to provide a framework for the
collaboration among physicians, scientists and government officials to address
the global allergy problem, in particular the medical, social and economic
issues associated with allergic diseases."

    The full Report will be available at from
    18 June 2008.

    This activity has been supported by an unrestricted educational grant
    from UCB, Nestle and Stallergenes.


    1)  World Allergy Organization. State of World Allergy Report 2008 -
        Allergy and chronic respiratory diseases. World Allergy Organization
        Journal e-supplement

        allergic_asthma/ (Due to the length of this URL, it may be necessary
        to copy and paste this hyperlink into your Internet browser's URL
        address field. Remove the space if one exists.)

For further information:

For further information: For media enquiries, please contact Karen
Henley on or the WAO, Milwaukee, USA on (414)

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