October - November 2021 (Online)
Live online sessions on 11 & 22 - 24 November 2021

Course details

  • Duration: live online sessions plus 8 weeks access to course materials
  • Fees:
    - £790
    - 10% discount for ICHNT staff
  • Venue: Online
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Due to the COVID-19 pandemic this course will be delivered remotely. 

In this short course you will study a comprehensive overview of food hypersensitivity in children and in adults and develop a robust understanding of the scientific basis underpinning its pathophysiology, diagnosis, prevention and management. This will enable you to develop your skills in identifying, planning the management and treatment of these patients, including in somewhat complex or challenging circumstances, from IgE and non IgE mediated allergy, to other immune and non-immune mediated food hypersensitivities. 

This course forms part of a range of short courses in Allergy which are available both to students who are enrolled on the MSc in allergy programme, and as stand-alone CPD programmes for GPs, specialist trainees and consultants, nurses, dietitians and other healthcare professionals wishing to improve their ability to manage allergic patients in daily practice.

More information

Course aims

The course should enable you to have the most up-to-date evidence-based knowledge and skills to optimally diagnose and manage complex food allergy in children and adults. By the end of this short course you will be better able to:

  • Illustrate the mechanisms involved in the development of food hypersensitivity and relate this to evaluate the most up-to-date diagnostic methods and treatments for this condition
  • Take an advanced medical and dietary history in children and adults with complex food allergy, propose the differential diagnosis, diagnostic work-up and optimal management plan
  • Design strategies to address difficult scenarios in practice such as highly restrictive diets, poor patient concordance, adolescent transition into adult care or high psychosocial burden in food allergic patients and their families both independently and as a team
  • Analyse current controversies and recommend preventive strategies for food allergy (such as pregnancy and early infancy interventions), as well as in advanced diagnostic and therapeutic procedures in food allergic patients (such as molecular tests, oral food challenges or food immunotherapy)

Course structure & delivery

Teaching delivery format
The course has been designed in an innovative format combining asynchronous materials (e.g. pre-recorded sessions, reading lists and web-based resources) to revise in your own time, and live interactive online sessions which will include focused discussions and case-based elements. A range of formats will be used to encourage active learning, including expert panel question & answer sessions, group work, workshops, role-play, pro-con debates and scenario-based sessions.

The live online sessions will take place in October/November, predominantly in the week starting on 22 November 2021. We encourage participants to book leave that week to follow the teaching. Asynchronous materials will be made available in early October and a ‘course launch webinar’ will be held for registered participants to introduce the course and help you get organised to maximize your learning experience.

Going through the asynchronous materials should take around 25-30 hours of study, and the live online sessions will take around 15-18 hours.

Key dates:

  • 14 October 2021: Launch Webinar (30 mins)
  • 11 November 2021: Warm Up Online Session (1.5-2h)
  • 22 - 24 November 2021: live online teaching (5 hours per day)

If feasible, short course delegates will be offered the option to attend on-campus teaching on 25 November 2021 at St Mary's Campus.


Planned topics


  • Nomenclature of the Food Hypersensitivity spectrum
  • Mechanisms of Immune-mediated disease
  • Epidemiology of food hypersensitivity - a world view of incidence, prevalence, genetic predisposition and the effect of maternal diet and lifestyle –
  • Microbiome from pregnancy to birth – the influence of the microbiome and other early life events on the development of allergic or inflammatory diseases
  • Breastfeeding and solid food introduction - is there a window of opportunity for allergy prevention?


  • Presentations of IgE-mediated allergy in children and adults
  • Mechanisms of enteropathy and mucosal inflammation?
  • Lower GI dysmotility disorders - diarrhoea, constipation and abdominal pain
  • Reflux and upper GI motility disorders
  • GI allergic disorders - There is something wrong with my baby? An overview of potential diagnosis in infants from symptom history
  • Coeliac disease
  • Proctocolitis, enteropathy and FPIES
  • Eosinophilic Oesophagitis – an overview
  • Eosinophilic oesophagitis – similarities and differences between paediatric and adult cases
  • Differential diagnoses in the food allergy clinic in adults
  • Sensitivity to natural food components or additives, IBS, spontaneous urticaria/angioedema, drug reactions
  • Something else entirely - MCAS, POTS, IBS, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome


  • The first step on the diagnostic pathway - The value of a complete clinical and dietary history
  • Diagnosis – who has come to the clinic?
  • Tests to support a diagnosis of non-IgE mediated gastrointestinal allergy - biopsy, pH studies, manometry, Hydrogen breath tests
  • Tests for IgE-mediated food allergy – are they the same in children and adults?
  • New diagnostic tests
  • When it is not IgE-mediated – diagnostic diets for food hypersensitivity
  • The pitfalls of dietary exclusion – is it OK not to reintroduce foods?
  • Who needs a food challenge? Getting the diagnosis right
  • Oral food challenge –hospital, outpatient clinic or home?


  • First steps to management in infancy – breastfeeding and milk exclusion in food hypersensitivity
  • Snakes and ladders – pearls and pitfalls of egg and milk ladders
  • Food labelling and may contain statements – what do they mean?
  • Real-world management - Shopping for food allergies and eating out
  • Growth and nutrition – is there a problem in children and adults and how can this be addressed?
  • Feeding difficulties and psychological support
  • Avoidant/Restrictive Food Intake Disorder (ARFID) - Is it an issue in food allergy?
  • Medical management of food allergy – not just about the diet
  • One adrenaline auto-injector or two? - Controversial issues in food allergy management
  • Food immunotherapy - The Holy grail of food allergy management?
  • Resolution - Which conditions are lifelong?

Please note there may be minor changes to the planned topics above.

Who should attend?

The course is suitable for doctors (GPs, specialist trainees and consultants in Allergy, Paediatrics, Gastroenterology), as well as nurses, dietitians, nutritionists and other healthcare professionals wishing to improve their ability to manage food allergic patients in daily practice.

CPD approval & certificate of attendance

CME approval from the Royal College of Physicians (RCP) will be sought.  All participants will be awarded an Imperial College London Certificate of Attendance on completion of the course.

Optional assessment

Participants have the option of completing an assessment component and on completion will be provided with an official Imperial College London transcript of results. Details of the assessment and deadline for submission will be given during the course. Please note that there is an additional assessment fee payable in full prior to submission date. Please contact us for further information.