A 38-year-old member asked:
why is allergic rhinitis also called hay fever? did it used to happen only with hay?
1 doctor answer
Dr. Steven Machtinger answered
44 years experience Allergy and Immunology
Name in olden times: In the 19th century inflammatory conditions were called "fevers". Temperature elevation was not a necessary requirement. Symptoms of ragweed allergy occur from mid-august to mid-september, the season when farmers cut the hay down in rural america. People attributed their allergic symptoms to dust from the cut hay. Ragweed pollen, the true cause of hay fever, was recognized only ~50 years ago.
Answered on Dec 9, 2013
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