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- Patient Comments: Anaphylaxis - Symptoms and Signs
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- Anaphylaxis facts
- What is anaphylaxis?
- What is the history of anaphylaxis?
- What are common causes of anaphylaxis?
- What are anaphylaxis symptoms and signs?
- What happens after the symptoms begin?
- Are there any disorders that appear similar to anaphylaxis?
- How is anaphylaxis diagnosed?
- How do we manage anaphylaxis?
- What are emergency measures used in the treatment of anaphylaxis?
- Is it possible to prevent anaphylaxis?
Quick GuideAllergy Pictures Slideshow: 10 Common Allergy Triggers
What are anaphylaxis symptoms and signs?
Anaphylaxis is a severe reaction that affects multiple areas of the body.
- The severity of the reaction varies from person to person.
- Subsequent reactions to the same trigger are typically similar in nature.
- The more rapid the onset of symptoms, the more severe the reaction is likely to be.
- A history of allergic disease (rhinitis, eczema, asthma) does not increase the risk of developing IgE mediated anaphylaxis, but it does incline the person to a non-IgE-mediated reaction.
- Underlying asthma may result in a more severe reaction and can be more difficult to treat.
The symptoms of an anaphylactic reaction may occur within seconds of exposure or be delayed 15-30 minutes, or even an hour or more after exposure (typical of reactions to aspirin and similar drugs). Early symptoms are often related to the skin and include
- flushing (warmth and redness of the skin),
- itching (often in the groin or armpits),
These symptoms are often accompanied by
- a feeling of "impending doom,"
- sometimes a rapid, irregular pulse.
- a runny nose;
- sneezing, and wheezing, which may worsen the breathing difficulty;
- vomiting, diarrhea, and stomach cramps may develop.
Some of the time, the mediators flooding the bloodstream cause a generalized opening of capillaries (tiny blood vessels) which results in
These are the typical features of anaphylactic shock.