Objective: To examine and compare the characteristics of children presenting with rice FPIES to those with cow's milk/soy FPIES.
Design: This was a retrospective study of children presenting with FPIES to the Children's Hospital at Westmead, NSW, Australia, over a 16 year period.
Results: There were 14 children with 26 episodes of rice FPIES compared with 17 children with 30 episodes of cow's milk (n=10) or soy (n=7) FPIES. Children with rice FPIES were more likely to have FPIES to other foods (36%) compared with those with FPIES to cow's milk/soy (0%). Rice caused more episodes of FPIES before a correct diagnosis was made (median 4, range 1-4 vs. median 2, range 1-2) and triggered more severe reactions with higher rates of intravenous fluid resuscitation (43% vs. 17%) compared to reactions caused by cow’s milk/soy.
Conclusion:This study highlights the emerging importance of rice, a food commonly thought to be "hypoallergenic", as a significant trigger of FPIES. Paediatricians should be aware that rice not only has the potential to cause FPIES, but that such reactions tend be more severe than those caused by cow's milk/soy.