What sort of impact do allergies have on society? Here's a rundown of some of the most important allergy statistics -- based on the best available data.
* Number of people in the U.S. who have either allergy or asthma symptoms: one in five. * Percentage of the U.S. population that tests positive to one or more allergens: 55%. * Rank of allergies among other leading chronic diseases in the U.S.: 5th. * Number of workdays lost each year as a result of hay fever: 4 million. * Number of weeks by which the ragweed pollen season has increased in the last 10 to 15 years, likely as a result of global warming: four. *Odds that a child with one allergic parent will develop allergies: 33%. *Odds that a child with two allergic parents will develop allergies: 70%. *Number of ER visits in the U.S. caused by food allergies each year: 30,000. * It is estimated that food allergies cause approximately 150 to 200 fatalities per year, based on data from a five year study of anaphylaxis in Minnesota from the Mayo Clinic. Fatal food anaphylaxis is most often caused by peanuts (50-62%) and tree nuts (15-30%).