Pig-cat syndrome: what is this allergy

The pig-cat syndrome is very rare and, for that reason, there are not many researches about it. It has to do, basically, with people who are allergic to cats and also to pork. It is what is called a 'cross allergy'.

So far they are Very few records exist about this health problem. The pig-cat syndrome was first named in 1994 . Only until the end of the 90s was a formal description made of this.

The manifestations of this disease are similar to those of other allergies . They range from skin reactions and respiratory problems to anaphylaxis. Therefore, the pig-cat syndrome should receive the attention it deserves.

A curious antecedent

Before the pig syndrome- cat described, Cisteró-Bahíma had made reference to one of these crossed allergies, which is curious . It was a 39-year-old woman who began to present symptoms of allergy to cats.

When examining her medical history, it was discovered that in her childhood she had suffered from oral itching when she consumed meat from rabbit . Already in adulthood, he also had allergic reactions to horse meat. A year before this, she had introduced a hamster to her home.

This led to the conclusion that it presented a 'cross-reactivity'. That is to say, it reacted allergically to several allergens. The points in common were then studied and it was concluded that everything could be due to the presence of a common protein in the epithelia of some animals and the flesh of others .


Causes of pig-cat syndrome

Cases of allergies to mammalian meat are extremely rare. However, in Recent years have been reported cases of this type, mainly in Europe and North America.

Everything seems to indicate that this is due to a hypersensitivity to the protein serum albumin This is present in cats and is very similar to the serum albumin of pork meat. This would explain why some people are allergic to one animal and one food at a time.

In mammals, serum albumins are present in various tissues. Also in the flesh, skin and different types of secretions . The mechanism through which these intolerances operate in humans is not known exactly.

Characteristics of the pig-cat syndrome

The little that is know about the cat-pig syndrome indicates that, usually, cat allergy first appears. This usually takes place during childhood. In contrast, pork allergy usually manifests in adulthood.

Likewise, it has been established that the Allergy to the epithelium of cats usually produces respiratory symptoms. In turn, intolerance to pork has the characteristics of a food allergy.In other meat allergies, the reaction takes several hours to manifest.

  • The reaction occurs against all foods of porcine origin , such as sausages, sausage, ham and others sausages.
  • Other interesting data ​​strong>

    There is some data that allow us to infer that the intolerance to cat serum albumin tends to disappear progressively over time . In these cases, there is also a remission of symptoms when consuming pork. However, if the contact with the cats continues, the intolerance to the pig is also maintained.

    It is important that a diagnosis is sought as accurate as possible to establish the presence of the pig-cat syndrome. Said diagnosis must be supported with the relevant skin tests and blood tests. Specific immunoglobulin E (IgE) must be determined to prevent other allergies.

    In general, those who suffer from these types of problems are advised to avoid eating pork. However, it is also recommended that they carry an adrenaline auto-injector for emergencies . Some food compositions do not allow detecting that they contain pork or any of its derivatives.

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