Fifteen million Americans have food allergies that could kill them and the problem seems to be on the rise. The Center for Disease Control reports an 18 percent increase between 1997 and 2007. Now there’s a new way to overcome food allergies.
Hannah Gooch was allergic to eggs, but no longer.
"It's a huge thing. I mean it makes me kinda teary thinking about it,” said Hannah’s mother Necia Joy.
She took part in an egg allergy study.
"There's no proactive treatment and that's the reason this study was done," said Dr. Wesley Burks.
The kids ate egg protein every day.
"They'd give me a dose of egg protein in powder,” said Hannah.
About once a year, they ate a real egg to test their tolerance. At the end of three years, 45 percent of the kids were able to eat eggs.
Dr. Burks says it's promising, but "...more phase two and then more phase three studies need to be done before we can say yes, it's the right thing to do."
It's changed Hannah's life. She's now able to eat eggs.
Doctor Burks says further studies testing the egg allergy treatment are in the works. He says if successful, it could be applied to other common food allergies, like milk and peanuts.