I am a physician-scientist with a broad background in molecular immunology, molecular biology and translational research applications. I completed an MD and PhD in pharmacology from Case Western Reserve University (CWRU), followed by clinical training in pediatrics and fellowship training in allergy/immunology at Cincinnati Children’s. I joined the Division of Allergy and Immunology faculty at Cincinnati Children’s in 2005.

My research as a faculty member has utilized basic, translational and genetic approaches to understanding pediatric disorders of immunodeficiency, immune dysregulation and adverse immune reactions to medications.

As a clinician, I see patients from around the country in consultation for immune deficiency, immune dysregulation and allergic disorders, particularly allergic drug reactions. My approach to patient care is the same as every other employee at Cincinnati Children’s — be the best at getting better!

Since 2019, I have been growing the scope and impact of the Cincinnati Children’s Drug Allergy Program. I’m honored to have received the Senior Faculty, Clinician Clinical Care Achievement Award (2020). This award honors our team's work building the drug allergy program at Cincinnati Children’s.

At least 10% of children have a medication allergy, which is generally unverified. Everybody wins when we can remove or confirm the allergy with allergy testing. I love the challenge of making the correct diagnosis and finding a treatment that improves the quality of people’s lives. I want to understand why children develop allergic symptoms with illnesses, how to treat their symptoms best, and the impact of medication allergy labels on the cost of medical care.

When not at work, I like to sail, walk my dog, watch sports and enjoy the outdoors with my family. I also love learning new science and making new research discoveries — this really energizes me!

MD: Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Cleveland, OH, 1997.

PhD: Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Cleveland, OH, 1996.

Residency: Pediatrics, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, 1997-2000.

Fellowship: Allergy / Immunology, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center.

Certification: Pediatrics, 2007; Allergy and Immunology, 2005.


Immune dysregulation; adverse drug reactions

Services and Specialties

Allergy and Immunology, Cancer and Blood Diseases, Immune Deficiencies and Histiocytosis, Eosinophilic Disorders, Hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosisHLH, Bone Marrow Transplantation BMT, Rare Lung Diseases


Adverse drug reactions; mechanisms of immune dysregulation

Research Areas

Allergy and Immunology, Bone Marrow Transplantation and Immune Deficiency, Cancer and Blood Diseases, Eosinophilic Disorders

Insurance Information

Cincinnati Children's strives to accept a wide variety of health plans. Please contact your health insurance carrier to verify coverage for your specific benefit plan.

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COVID-19 Vaccination in Patients with Inborn Errors of Immunity Reduces Hospitalization and Critical Care Needs Related to COVID-19: a USIDNET Report. McDonnell, J; Cousins, K; Younger, ME M; Lane, A; Abolhassani, H; Abraham, RS; Al-Tamemi, S; Aldave-Becerra, JC; Al-Faris, EH; Alfaro-Murillo, A; Lim, XR; Lopes, JP; López, AL; Tarquini, L. Journal of Clinical Immunology. 2024; 44:86.

Evaluation of association of anti-PEG antibodies with anaphylaxis after mRNA COVID-19 vaccination. Zhou, ZH; Cortese, MM; Fang, JL; Wood, R; Hummell, DS; Risma, KA; Norton, AE; KuKuruga, M; Kirshner, S; Rabin, RL; Forshee, R; Broder, KR; Anderson, S; Kozlowski, S. Vaccine. 2023; 41:4183-4189.

Beta-Lactam Allergy Association with Surgical Site Infections in Pediatric Procedures: A Matched Cohort Study. Huang, FS; Mangeot, C; Sucharew, H; Simon, K; Courter, J; Risma, K; Schaffzin, JK. Journal of the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society. 2023; 12:123-127.

Distinct Characteristics and Chronology of Amoxicillin-Associated Reactions in Pediatric Acute Care Settings. Guarnieri, KM; Xie, SS; Courter, JD; Liu, C; Ruddy, RM; Risma, KA. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice. 2022; 10:2951-2957.e3.

Predictors of Acute Care Reutilization in Pediatric Patients With Amoxicillin-Associated Reactions. Xie, SS; Guarnieri, KM; Courter, JD; Liu, C; Ruddy, RM; Risma, KA. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice. 2022; 10:2958-2966.e3.

Targeted IL-4Rα blockade ameliorates refractory allergic eosinophilic inflammation in a patient with dysregulated TGF-β signaling due to ERBIN deficiency. Droghini, HR; Abonia, JP; Collins, MH; Milner, JD; Lyons, JJ; Freeman, AF; Mukkada, VA; Risma, KA; Rothenberg, ME; Schwartz, JT. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice. 2022; 10:1903-1906.

Treatment of STAT3-deficient hyper-immunoglobulin E syndrome with monoclonal antibodies targeting allergic inflammation. James, AE; West, L; Schloss, K; Nataraj, P; Urban, A; Hirsch, A; Krausz, M; Kumar, S; Raasch, J; Risma, K; Church, JA; Grimbacher, B; Bergerson, JR E; Chong, H; Freeman, AF. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice. 2022; 10:1367-1370.e1.

Anaphylaxis knowledge gaps and future research priorities: A consensus report. Dribin, TE; Schnadower, D; Wang, J; Camargo, CA; Michelson, KA; Shaker, M; Rudders, SA; Vyles, D; Golden, DB K; Spergel, JM; Witry, JK; Zhang, Y; Sobolewski, B; Sampson, HA. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. 2022; 149:999-1009.

Respiratory Infections in Patients with Primary Immunodeficiency. Lehman, HK; Yu, KO A; Towe, CT; Risma, KA. Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology: In Practice. 2022; 10:683-691.e1.

COVID-19 mRNA vaccine allergy. Risma, KA. Current Opinion in Pediatrics. 2021; 33:610-617.

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