Kansas City,
10:05 AM

The Wichita Eagle: Shouldn't allergy season be ending now?

Blame pumpkin patches, Oklahoma, Texas and warm weather for those late-season allergy and asthma flare-ups, experts say.

Dr. Jay Portnoy, director of allergy,asthma and immunology for Children’s Mercy Kansas City said excessive mold at pumpkin patches consistently prompts asthma symptoms and mold sensitivity around Halloween.

But he said Kansas also has unusually high levels of pollen from juniper plants in Oklahoma and Texas that travel to Wichita and Kansas via blustery winds. And the lack of cool weather in Wichita has dragged out allergy season.

Portnoy said pollens cause hay fever and allergies, while molds trigger asthma and lung disease.

Each person with allergies has a unique allergy pattern, he said, so some people will be particularly allergic to juniper, while others can be unaffected by it.

A pollen count is measured by the number of pollen grains in a cubic meter of air. The higher the number, the more people will likely suffer with allergies.

Kansas’ pollen count right now has 59 pollen grains of juniper per cubic meter, which is considered high – especially for this time of year.

Colder weather will bring relief, but it’s unclear when exactly cold weather will arrive.


Read the full story via The Wichita Eagle.

Learn more about the Division of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology at Children's Mercy.