Objective: The use of other mammals` milk as an alternative treatment of cow`s milk allergy is controversial due to their similar protein structures. In the present study, we aimed to investigate cross reactions with sheep`s, goat, and camel`s milks using skin prick test and atopy patch test in children with cow`s milk allergy.
Materials and Methods: Our study group was composed of patients with atopic dermatitis who were diagnosed with cow`s milk allergy in our former study where we investigated the sensitivity of different diagnostic tests commonly used to determine cow`s milk allergy. In all patients, cow`s milk, sheep`s milk, goat`s milk and camel`s milk were used for skin prick test and atopy patch test. The study data were analyzed with SPSS 20.0 for Windows.
Results: Among the patients with cow`s milk allergy, 15 (63%) had early-onset and 9 (37%) late-onset reactions with provocation tests. Seven (70%) of 10 children who were found skin prick test positive with cow`s milk were shown to have a cross reaction against goat`s and sheep`s milk with skin prick test; 8 (88.8%) of 9 children who were found to be atopy patch test positive with cow`s milk had a cross reaction against goat`s milk, and 7 (66.6%) against sheep`s milk. No patient with cow`s milk allergy had a cross reaction with camel`s milk with either skin prick test or atopy patch test.
Conclusion: Our study demonstrated that a cross reaction occurs at a quite high rate between cow`s milk, sheep`s milk and goat`s milk as revealed by both skin prick testing and atopy patch test, whereas there was no demonstrable cross reaction between cow`s milk and camel`s milk by either method.