Are you a patient with Allergies ?
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Allergies (Food, Drug, Environmental)
An allergy is an immune system reaction that occurs soon after eating a certain food, ingesting certain medications, or being exposed to certain environmental elements. Even a tiny amount of the allergy-causing component can trigger signs and symptoms such as digestive problems, hives or swollen airways. In some people, allergies can cause severe symptoms or even a life-threatening reaction known as anaphylaxis.
Allergies occur when your immune system reacts to a foreign substance that doesn’t cause a reaction in most people. The severity of allergies varies from person to person and can range from minor irritation to anaphylaxis, a potentially life-threatening emergency. The largest ongoing studies include IgE, SP/AAS IgE, environmental, medication, and food allergies
The most common signs and symptoms of allergies include:
- Tingling or itching in the mouth
- Hives, itching or eczema
- Swelling of the lips, face, tongue and throat or other parts of the body
- Wheezing, nasal congestion or trouble breathing
- Abdominal pain, diarrhea, nausea or vomiting
- Dizziness, lightheadedness or fainting
In some people, allergies can trigger a severe reaction called anaphylaxis. This can cause life-threatening signs and symptoms, including:
- Constriction and tightening of airways
- A swollen throat or the sensation of a lump in your throat that makes it difficult to breathe
- Shock with a severe drop in blood pressure
- Rapid pulse
- Dizziness, lightheadedness or loss of consciousness
Emergency treatment is critical for anaphylaxis. Untreated, anaphylaxis can cause a coma or even death.
The only way to avoid an allergic reaction is to avoid the triggers that cause signs and symptoms. However, despite your best efforts, you may come into contact with the elements that cause a reaction. For minor reactions, use an over-the-counter antihistamine. For severe reactions, you may need an injection of epinephrine and a trip to the emergency room. (Mayo Clinic, 2015)