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Allergy shock defined

16 replies [Last post]
By on Sun, 02-07-99, 05:52

Allergy shock also called anaphylactic shock is a severe allergic reaction in which a person goes into shock. It sometimes occurs when people come into contact with a substance to which they are allergic. This is a true life-threatening emergency. There is no way of knowing if patients will stabilize, grow worse slowly or rapidly, or overcome the reaction on their own. Many patients in allergy shock decline rapily. For some, death is a certain outcome unless special treatment is given quickly. Many different things can cause allergy shock, such as:
1. Insect bites and stings, including bee stings
2. Foods and spices (example: peanuts)
3. Inhaled substances, including dust and pollens
4. Chemicals, Inhaled or when in contact with skin
5. Medications, injected or taken by mouthe, including penicillin

The sign and symptoms of allergy shock are:

1. Skin- burning, itching, or "breaking out"
(such as hives or some type of rash)
2. Breathing- difficult and rapid, with possible chest pains and wheezing
3. Pulse- rapid, very weak or not detected
4. Face- the lips often turn blue(cyanosis), the face and tongue may swell
5. State of consciousness- restlessness, often followed by fainting or unconsciousness

Patients in allergy shock need medications as soon as possible. Some people who are sensitive to peanuts or have other allergy problems carry medications to take in case of an emergency. These medications, usaully epinephrine and/or antihistamines, can be administered by the patient.

[This message has been edited by Firefighter1 (edited February 07, 1999).]

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By Luke's Mom on Sun, 02-07-99, 16:25

How many times can a child of 2 1/2 receive an Epipen treatment - for example if we are camping in mountains and he is exposed to peanuts, goes into reaction, if we have more than one Epi on hand, when can we use it after the initial Epipen is administered? Of course we would be on the way to hospital and/or emergency services in the meanwhiel.Thanks for your knowledgeable information!

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By cyn on Sun, 02-07-99, 17:54

Quite an excellent summary of allergy shock! I would add two things: a sudden drop in blood pressure and persistent coughing. Part of the problem with the overall swelling is that the airways can become constricted. Worse case scenario is that the throat swells shut and no oxygen gets to the lungs. One reason the peanut allergy is so dangerous for people with asthma is that the bronchioli are already challenged by the asthma and bringing on another challenge with the peanut allergen tips the scales in the wrong direction. The persistent cough is a warning sign that the airways are starting to constrict.


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By on Mon, 02-08-99, 15:34

I would ask your allergist or doctor about how many times you can administer an epipen to your child. However, I will research the topic and get back to you with a more informative answer. I am glad you said you would be on your way to the emergency room.
The epipen is not a fix all, your child would need immediate medical attention. Let me suggest that you take a cellular phone with you to the mountains that way you can alert the authorities and they can advise you where the closest hospital is and if possible maybe get to you quicker than you can get to them. thanks for the reply

[This message has been edited by Firefighter1 (edited February 08, 1999).]

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By mestevens on Mon, 02-08-99, 17:29

The Standard rule we were given was to have 1 epi-pen for every 1/2 hour it would take to get to a hospital. As mentioned before though, you should check with your pediatrician for a more exact recommendation for your child.

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By Luke's Mom on Mon, 02-08-99, 19:57

Thank you for your responses. I carry a cell. phone all the time with a back-up battery. I learned the hard way regarding a phone, I was in the middle of a large park, 6 months pregnant with my daughter, when my son ran ahead of me and started throwing what I thought was rocks in the stream. It was peanut shells! I grabbed him before there was any reaction, but the lesson I learned was valuable - always carry a phone! There would have been no way I could have carried him being pregnant, for a few miles, to the nearest phone. Having said that, some of the mountain parks loses cell. phone connections, but we make sure there is a pay-phone for emergencies.

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By Bec on Fri, 08-04-00, 13:38

I need help understanding anaphylactic shock. My son has had differenet reactions to various nuts. Mostly hives, eye swelling and rash. Can it get more severe or can I assume this is all that will ever happen? He is a class 6 for peanut- thus the eye swelling?

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By donner on Fri, 08-04-00, 13:53

Thank you, Firefighter1, for that valuable information! Although, everytime I read something like this, I lose my 'comfort zone'! I'd like to mention persistent and uncontrollable sneezing as a symptom as well. My daughter has had all of the above symptoms and the sneezing as well.

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By on Fri, 08-04-00, 19:58

There's also another thread recently started on the same thing except titled Anaphylactic Shock - Your Definition, which, for people reading and posting in this one, might be of interest for comparison sake. They're basically about the same topic but with different titles. I know that my son's school has 2 Epi-pens. One to administer immediately and one to administer 20 minutes later should the ambulance not have arrived yet. That's the time frame our doctor put on it. Also, when he had his 2nd anaphylactic reaction and we didn't know that you were supposed to go to the hospital after administering the Epi-pen, he started to "go" again about 20 minutes after the shot. It's really too bad that the moderator can't find someway to put the threads next to each other that are of similar content. Keep them separate, as they have been started by separate people and different people have posted on them, but keep them together on the board so that people see both of them when they come in. Do you know what I mean? I'm finding that it's getting really confusing with posting all over the place and I'm as guilty as the next person, posting a School topic under Main Discussion rather than Schools because I know that Main Discussion is where most people go first and knowing that a good thread of mine got buried in the Living with PA heading whereas it might not have in Main Discussion. Anyway, aside from that rant, you may want to check out the other thread for additional or cross referencing material. Best wishes.


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By on Fri, 08-04-00, 20:01

Caliope3, I STRONGLY urge you to check out that other thread because it does have a very lengthy definition of anaphylactic shock and quite some discussion about it. It lists, I believe, every possible symptom. Then, after reading that, you can perhaps, with the guidance of your doctor, decide if your child has suffered a mild anaphylactic reaction to peanut products. Please check out the other thread. Best wishes!


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By CamsMom on Mon, 08-07-00, 13:19

Cindy, I don't think peanutallergy.com has moderators. I'm not sure, but I get the feeling that Chris is the only one running this website. I've been thinking of contacting him and seeing if he would want to recruit a few of the "veterans" here and have them moderate the message boards.

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By on Tue, 08-07-01, 15:26

I'm re-raising this thread for Neighbourgal, in the hopes that she may have an opportunity to look at it.

Best wishes! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]


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By Treversmom on Mon, 08-13-01, 20:41

Hi. I just thought I would go into a little further depth as far as the swelling goes as one of the symptoms. When swelling occurs, it is because plasthma is leaking out of the blood cells and into the other body tissue. That is what is causing the swelling. However, because there is now a lack of volume in the blood, the heart is also overcompensating for this, and outting strain upon itself. This was explained to me by a nurse who is also the parent of a PA child. So I am thinking it is quite reliable.
Also, I was told by a GP that you can only give 3 epipens safely before they would have to move onto a different drug through IV. And the rule of thumb is to administer them 15 to 20 minutes apart if there is not full improvement of symptoms and they are not in hospital yet. However, if you administer the 1st epipen and there is absolutely no change in symptoms at all, go ahead and administer the 2nd within 4 or 5 minutes (if you are dealing with a patient who is in serious trouble)as some epipens may have been rendered ineffective due to heat or cold. This was advised by my well-respected allergist.

I hope this is helpful. :-)

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By on Thu, 04-03-03, 22:48

Simply re-raising to compliment a thread currently running by Laureen. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

Best wishes! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]


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By on Mon, 10-27-03, 05:26

Simply re-raising for Lauren's Mom. [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

Best wishes! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]


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By Kimbo on Thu, 10-07-04, 23:38

Simply re-raising.

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By on Tue, 05-02-06, 00:49

Simply re-raising, but I'm looking for the other one discussed within this one.

Best wishes! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

If tears could build a stairway and memories a lane, I would walk up to heaven and bring you back home with me.

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