May, 2016

Recognizing the Signs of Anaphylactic Shock

Tuesday, May 31st, 2016

Anaphylactic shock, also known as anaphylaxis, is a life-threatening allergic reaction beginning in the immune system. The body releases an antibody known as Immunoglobulin E to fight off an allergen that is potentially dangerous. In some cases, this antibody can trigger extreme reactions in the body.

When this happens, anaphylactic shock can occur. To avoid a devastating outcome, it is crucial to understand the signs of anaphylactic shock and know how to treat an individual who is suffering from anaphylaxis.

Signs of Anaphylactic Shock

According to Mayo Clinic, the signs of anaphylactic shock include:

  • Skin reactions, such as hives, pale or flushed skin, or itching
  • The sensation of a lump in the throat
  • A feeing of warmth
  • Airway construction caused by a swollen tongue or throat
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Wheezing
  • Weak, rapid pulse
  • Nausea, vomiting or diarrhea
  • Dizziness
  • Fainting

What Causes Anaphylaxis?

There are several common allergens that can trigger anaphylactic shock in some people, including:

  • Pollen
  • Nuts
  • Dairy
  • Shellfish
  • Seeds
  • Insect stings
  • Medications

In some situations, exercise can also trigger anaphylactic shock when then activity occurs following exposure to an allergen.

How to Treat Anaphylactic Shock Signs of Anaphylactic Shock

If you or someone you know is experiencing anaphylaxis, seek immediately medical attention. Individuals who suffer from known serious allergies should always carry epinephrine, most often in the form of an EpiPen. When someone is in anaphylactic shock, the EpiPen is used to inject epinephrine through the outer thigh into the muscle.

When administered promptly, it can reverse anaphylactic shock and ensure that the heart continues to beat. However, it is still necessary to seek immediate medical attention after the medication is administered.

It is possible to develop a life-threatening allergy at any time in your life, so it’s important to recognize the signs of anaphylactic shock and understand what to do in an emergency. If you suffer from even mild allergies, comprehensive allergy testing is recommended. Making yourself aware of your allergies can help you avoid a potentially deadly situation.

For help dealing with your allergies, contact Sinus & Snoring Centers of Texas today to schedule an appointment with Dr. Khetarpal.