The Cleveland Clinic Food Allergy Center is a comprehensive, multidisciplinary program that is tailored to the individual needs of our pediatric and adult patients with food allergies.
A food allergy is caused when the body's immune system mistakes an ingredient in food—usually a protein—as harmful and creates a defense system to fight it.
Although a person could have an allergy to almost any food, the following 8 foods account for almost 90% of all food-related allergic reactions:
- Tree nuts (such as cashews and walnuts)
A Team Approach
Our multidisciplinary care team of allergists, pediatric psychologists, and registered dietitians has extensive experience in diagnosing and caring for pediatric and adult patients living with food allergies. Our team works collaboratively to prevent, diagnose, study, and treat food allergies and diseases caused by reactions to foods.
These unique collaborations include:
- Food allergy experts in the management of prevention of food allergy in high risk patients, and providing patient-centered care to those with food allergies.
- Collaboration with experts in Dermatology, Gastroenterology and other fields for patients to participate in multidisciplinary clinics to address other allergic conditions.
- Our mission includes treatment of food allergies in carefully select patients using the most up to date therapy, and performance of research in multiple areas of food allergy to improve the lives of our patients.
- Our team includes registered dietitians for continued care from diagnosis of food allergy, during and post treatment to ensure each patient is achieving nutritional goals though a full assessment. Patients with food allergy have unique dietary needs and our registered dietitians can also assist with creation of food allergy friendly recipes, avoidance strategies, as well as food introduction and substitution recommendations.
- Pediatric psychologists are available on-site for evaluation and education in management strategies including relaxation strategies for food allergy associated or treatment associated anxiety.
Child With Peanut Allergies Turns to Same Food to Build ToleranceHarper received oral immunotherapy at Cleveland Clinic to help overcome her food allergies. Read Harper Hoosenally's Story
What We Treat
The Food Allergy Center treats pediatric and adult patients and families with food allergies. These patients frequently have multiple food allergies. In addition, these patients may be diagnosed with other allergic diseases, such as hay fever (allergic rhinitis), eczema, and asthma.
Patients with food allergies may suffer from anxiety, isolation, and bullying caused by their food allergies.
We also see patients with disease processes which can be associated with foods such as eosinophilic esophagitis, food protein-induced enterocolitis syndrome and food protein proctocolitis.
Patients and families should expect world- class care from a dedicated staff. We can help diagnose, manage and treat food allergy for select patients.
Early Oral Immunotherapy (OIT) Treatment for Pediatric Patients
At the Cleveland Clinic FACE, we offer a full range of food allergy services to even our youngest patients, including food desensitization with oral immunotherapy.
What is Oral Immunotherapy (OIT)?
Oral immunotherapy, or OIT, is a type of food desensitization where children are given small amounts of a food allergen such as peanuts to eat. They continue that dose every day to help develop a tolerance, so that eventually they can consume at least two peanut kernels without a reaction. Some patients who pursue this treatment are eventually able to consume normal serving sizes of the food.
Early oral immunotherapy for patients preschool age and younger has shown to be particularly effective, with younger patients often seeing an increased ability to freely eat food they were allergic to before treatment — compared to older pediatric patients.
Why Choose Cleveland Clinic for Early OIT?
Cleveland Clinic is one of the few health systems in the country providing early OIT treatment to children 4 years old and younger. Our pediatric patients have excellent treatment outcomes, based on clinical research and established safety guidelines.
If you are interested in scheduling an evaluation with our team for your child of any age who has been diagnosed with a food allergy, please call 216.444.6503 to discuss your options with one of our food allergy experts.
A pediatric, registered dietitian is a licensed health professional who specializes in the nutritional care of children and understands their specific nutritional needs. Cleveland Clinic Children’s has a team of registered dietitians, board certified in pediatrics, who collaborate with physician and multi-disciplinary teams to provide expert, evidence-based nutritional care for infants, children and adolescents. The dietitian provides individual counseling to assess each child’s nutritional needs, develop the most appropriate plan of nutritional support, and monitors nutritional status to ensure an optimal outcome.
- Hannah Freeman, RD
- Diana Schnee, RD
- Erin Lenighan, RD
- Merideth Miller, RD
- Hanna Leiken, RD
The nursing staff is an integral part of the team caring for our patients and their families. Our nurses are trained in recognizing and treating patients with allergic reactions. They are devoted to giving exceptional care to each and every one of our patients.
- Ashley Danisek, MA
- Jenica Dolar, LPN
- Brittany Brooks, RN
- Samantha Egan, RN
- Kimberly Lewis, RN
- Patricia Nolder, RN
- Heather Owen, RN
- Marcia Roeper, RN
- Pamela TeGrotenhuis, RN
- Marianne Tletski, RN
Appointments & Locations
To schedule an appointment with a provider at the Food Allergy Center of Excellence, please call 216.444.6503.
Virtual visits are available for both new consults and follow-up appointments. Please discuss with your provider to determine if this is an option for you.
R Building – Cleveland Clinic Children’s Outpatient Center
8950 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland, Ohio 44106
Strongsville Family Health and Surgery Center
16761 South Park Center
Strongsville, Ohio 44136
6780 Mayfield Rd.
Mayfield Heights , Ohio 44124
Food allergy providers also offer services at other Cleveland Clinic locations. You can make an appointment at one of these locations:
Listen to episodes of Cleveland Clinic's podcast Health Essentials about peanut allergies:
Find medical, health and wellness news, information and insights from Cleveland Clinic:
- What to Do If Your Child Has a Severe Peanut Allergy
- Can Allergies Go Away or Develop as You Age?
- Adult Food Allergies Are More Common Than You Might Think
- First Peanut Allergy Drug for Children Approved by FDA
- Could There Be a Cure For Peanut Allergies in Children?
Find helpful posts from Cleveland Clinic's site for physicians and healthcare professionals. Discover the latest peanut allergy research insights, innovations, treatment trends and more:
- Immunotherapy for Peanut Allergy: 2 Pediatric Trials
- No. 4 Medical Innovation for 2020: Therapy for Peanut Allergies
Other Online Resources
The Code Ana Program was developed in 2015, focusing on creating a school-wide anaphylaxis response plan. Code Ana’s mission is to equip schools to prevent and be prepared for medical emergencies. Since its creation, the program has been adopted by multiple schools, and thousands of childhood educators have been trained by Code Ana.
Research & Clinical Trials
Clinical trials (or research studies) help us create the medicine of tomorrow. They provide hope through offering testing of new drugs, new surgical techniques or other treatments before they are widely available.
We can help you access hundreds of clinical trials across all specialty areas. Our new searchable online trials tool makes identifying treatment opportunities easier than ever.
For Medical Professionals
Our secure online service provides referring physicians access to patient’s treatment progress with streamlined communication from Cleveland Clinic physicians to your office, allowing continued participation in the ongoing care of patients. With the best possible treatment plans and coordinated care, our team approach benefits both the patient and the referring physician.
Diagnosis and treatment for food allergies have advanced dramatically in the last 5 years. Novel therapies, such as oral immunotherapy (OIT), have presented the possibility of preventing life-threatening reactions for even our youngest of food allergic patients. OIT is a type of food desensitization in which children are given small,increasing amounts of an allergenic food, such as peanut, to gradually develop a tolerance to that food.
Early OIT for patients of preschool age and younger has shown to be effective as well. When compared to the progress of older pediatric patients, younger patients often see an increased ability to freely eat food they were allergic to before treatment.
Cleveland Clinic is one of the few healthcare systems in the country providing early OIT treatment to children 4 years old and younger. Our pediatric patients have excellent treatment outcomes, based on clinical research and established safety guidelines.
In this webinar, Cleveland Clinic Allergists will discuss identification, prevention, diagnosis and novel therapies for food allergies.