Allergic reactions and asthma

When it comes to allergies, almost 30% of adults and almost 40% of children in US are going through it right now. According to the AAFA, allergies affect 50 million Americans every year. Allergies are among the leading chronic diseases in the U.S. and the third leading chronic disease among children under 18 years of age.

What are allergic reactions? 

It is the body’s way of reaction to a usually harmless substance or to make it easier an “invader” or outsider. Once the body gets to know a foreign substance known as antigen has entered, the immune system get’s triggered. Our immune system usually protects us from this foreign substance, although at times it can be an overreaction to, it creates a hypersensitive reaction or an allergic reaction.

Symptoms:

Symptoms depend upon what body part affected or the severity of the reaction. But below are some common symptoms that could occur:

  • Skin irritation such as swelling, itching, redness, etc
  • Tightness in the chest, difficulty breathing or cough
  • Headaches or a hoarse throat
  • Urticaria Rash
  • Stuffy nose, runny nose, sneezing constantly
  • Red shot, swollen or watery eyes
  • Nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea
  • Light-headedness, fatigue, etc.

 

How Allergen or Foreign Body may enter in body?

  • Oral in-take of certain food or its component, plants, Medication or Chemical substances.
  • Skin Contact with certain medication, plants, Chemical, animals’ excretions Swelling

and food Products.

  • Air born contact with allergen(s) though Nose, eye, and or lung inhalation from plants, animal parts or excretions and food particles.
  • Intravenous or intravascular injections of Medication, Drugs and Chemical subcentres.

We do not know how a foreign body or invader play a role as an Allergen or invader, triggers a hypersensitivity reaction in certain human or animal at certain time of life and the same invader or allergen would remain completely innocent in other human or animal during their entire life without any allergic reaction.

    

How is an allergic reaction diagnosed & treated? 

The first step the physician undertakes is to determine the severity of the allergic reaction.

In case of severe reaction such as Anaphylactic Reaction needs immediate medical attention.

  • Checking the pulse and blood pressure along with close monitoring.
  • Check if patient need any help in breathing
  • Establish an IV line to infuse fluid
  • Anti-allergy medication such as antihistamine (Benadryl), Adrenalin & Steroid introduced IV or IM .

 

If Allergic reaction is mild:

it can be treated with oral medication such as antihistamines (Benadryl, Allegra, Zyrtec) & Corticosteroids.

what are antihistamines, corticosteroids?

Antihistamines:

  • Are the best bet when it comes to reducing the symptoms of allergies that lead to skin reactions, sneezing or watery eyes as they decrease the production of histamine in the body.
  • Antihistamines come in many forms such as oral pills, tablets, nasal sprays, liquids or eye drops. They are likely to cause a certain level of drowsiness.

 

Corticosteroids:

  • Corticosteroids are topical medication, used in ointment or cream format, reduces inflammation and itching caused by the allergic reaction.
  • Steroid may also be used in inhaler format for Lung if causesBronchospasm reaction like asthma presenting as shortness of breath & wheezing.
  • Steroid may be used intravenous when dealing with sever allergic reaction.

 

When Should You Seek Medical Care for an Allergic Reaction?

Allergic reactions have the tendency to worsen in minutes, therefore, medical care is recommended even for a minor one. There are certain symptoms that cannot be ignored and require immediate emergency attention & treatment such as:

    Suddenly or rapidly worsening symptoms

    Exposure to an allergen that has caused a severe or bad reaction previously

    Swelling of the mouth, nose, face or throat

    Chest tightness, trouble breathing, wheezing, etc

    Confused state, nausea or vomiting

    Severe hives or rashes

    Collapsing, unconsciousness or light-headedness

 

What are the common allergens?

  • Animal dander
  • Bee stings
  • Certain medications such as penicillin
  • Dust mites
  • Foods — particularly peanuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish, eggs, milk, wheat, and soy
  • Insect bites
  • Latex or other materials you touch
  • Mold, Plants and pollens

Other Forms of Allergies

Atopic Allergy Allergic Rhinitis, Allergic Conjunctivitis, Atopic Dermatitis, Asthma

Allergic Urticaria Idiopathic Urticaria

Anaphylactic Reaction to: Food & Food Products, Nuts & Seeds, Fruits & Vegetable, Fish & Shellfish, Milk & Dairy, Eggs and others.

Have Epinephrine Pen ready with you with this kind Allergy at all time.

Arhus Phenomenon (reaction)

  • Is a localized vasculitis associated with deposition of immune complexes and activation of complement?
  • Immune complexes form in the setting of high local concentration of vaccine antigens and high circulating antibody concentration.

Arhus reactions are characterized by severe pain, swelling, induration, edema, hemorrhage & necrosis

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