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A Weekly Medical Minute: Anaphylaxis

Anaphylaxis is a serious and life-threatening allergic reaction. The most common anaphylactic reactions are to foods, insect stings, medications and latex.

When a person has an allergic reaction to a substance, their immune system overreacts to this “allergen” by releasing chemicals that cause the symptoms of an allergic reaction.

Symptoms of an allergic reaction can include swelling, hives, itchiness, a rash, and difficulty breathing.

When the symptoms begin to impede a persons ability to breath, by swelling of the mouth or throat, then an allergic reaction becomes “Anaphylactic” and life threatening.

Light to Mild allergic reactions can many times be treated with a proper dose of Benadryl, while severe allergic reactions may require steroids or an EpiPen injection.

Any allergic reaction that involves swelling of the mouth throat, or is making it difficult to breath, should prompt an immediate call to Hatzalah.

If you have mild to severe or reoccurring allergic reactions, visit your Primary Car Physician, you may need to carry an EpiPen for emergency situations.

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