How to know if you are allergic to something: Food allergy – Symptoms and causes
Food allergy – Symptoms and causes
Food allergy is an immune system reaction that occurs soon after eating a certain food. Even a tiny amount of the allergy-causing food can trigger signs and symptoms such as digestive problems, hives or swollen airways. In some people, a food allergy can cause severe symptoms or even a life-threatening reaction known as anaphylaxis.
Food allergy affects an estimated 6 to 8 percent of children under age 3 and up to 3 percent of adults. While there’s no cure, some children outgrow their food allergy as they get older.
It’s easy to confuse a food allergy with a much more common reaction known as food intolerance. While bothersome, food intolerance is a less serious condition that does not involve the immune system.
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For some people, an allergic reaction to a particular food may be uncomfortable but not severe. For other people, an allergic food reaction can be frightening and even life-threatening. Food allergy symptoms usually develop within a few minutes to two hours after eating the offending food.
The most common food allergy signs and symptoms 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, a food allergy can trigger a severe allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. This can cause life-threatening signs and symptoms, including:
- Constriction and tightening of the 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.
When to see a doctor
See a doctor or allergist if you have food allergy symptoms shortly after eating. If possible, see your doctor when the allergic reaction is occurring. This will help your doctor make a diagnosis.
Seek emergency treatment if you develop any signs or symptoms of anaphylaxis, such as:
- Constriction of airways that makes it difficult to breathe
- Shock with a severe drop in blood pressure
- Rapid pulse
- Dizziness or lightheadedness
When you have a food allergy, your immune system mistakenly identifies a specific food or a substance in food as something harmful. In respose, your immune system triggers cells to release an antibody known as immunoglobulin E (IgE) to neutralize the allergy-causing food or food substance (the allergen).
The next time you eat even the smallest amount of that food, IgE antibodies sense it and signal your immune system to release a chemical called histamine, as well as other chemicals, into your bloodstream. These chemicals cause allergy symptoms.
In adults, the majority of food allergies are triggered by certain proteins in:
- Shellfish, such as shrimp, lobster and crab
- Tree nuts, such as walnuts and pecans
In children, food allergies are commonly triggered by proteins in:
- Tree nuts
- Cow’s milk
Pollen-food allergy syndrome
Also known as oral allergy syndrome, pollen-food allergy syndrome affects many people who have hay fever. In this condition, certain fresh fruits and vegetables or nuts and spices can trigger an allergic reaction that causes the mouth to tingle or itch. In serious cases, the reaction results in swelling of the throat or even anaphylaxis.
Proteins in certain fruits, vegetables, nuts and spices cause the reaction because they’re similar to allergy-causing proteins found in certain pollens. This is an example of cross-reactivity.
When you cook foods that trigger pollen-food allergy syndrome, your symptoms may be less severe.
This following table shows the specific fruits, vegetables, nuts and spices that can cause pollen-food allergy syndrome in people who are allergic to different pollens.
|If you are allergic to:||Birch pollen||Ragweed pollen||Grasses||Mugwort pollen|
|You may also have a reaction to:||Almond
Some herbs and spices (anise, caraway, coriander, fennel, parsley)
Melons (cantaloupe, honeydew and watermelon)
Melons (cantaloupe, honeydew and watermelon)
Some herbs and spices (anise, black pepper, caraway seed, coriander, fennel, mustard, parsley)
Exercise-induced food allergy
Eating certain foods may cause some people to feel itchy and lightheaded soon after starting to exercise. Serious cases may even involve hives or anaphylaxis. Not eating for a couple of hours before exercising and avoiding certain foods may help prevent this problem.
Food intolerance and other reactions
A food intolerance or a reaction to another substance you ate may cause the same signs and symptoms as a food allergy does — such as nausea, vomiting, cramping and diarrhea.
Depending on the type of food intolerance you have, you may be able to eat small amounts of problem foods without a reaction. By contrast, if you have a true food allergy, even a tiny amount of food may trigger an allergic reaction.
One of the tricky aspects of diagnosing food intolerance is that some people are sensitive not to the food itself but to a substance or ingredient used in the preparation of the food.
Common conditions that can cause symptoms mistaken for a food allergy include:
- Absence of an enzyme needed to fully digest a food. You may not have adequate amounts of some enzymes needed to digest certain foods. Insufficient quantities of the enzyme lactase, for example, reduce your ability to digest lactose, the main sugar in milk products. Lactose intolerance can cause bloating, cramping, diarrhea and excess gas.
- Food poisoning. Sometimes food poisoning can mimic an allergic reaction. Bacteria in spoiled tuna and other fish also can make a toxin that triggers harmful reactions.
- Sensitivity to food additives. Some people have digestive reactions and other symptoms after eating certain food additives. For example, sulfites used to preserve dried fruit, canned goods and wine can trigger asthma attacks in sensitive people.
- Histamine toxicity. Certain fish, such as tuna or mackerel, that are not refrigerated properly and that contain high amounts of bacteria may also contain high levels of histamine that trigger symptoms similar to those of food allergy. Rather than an allergic reaction, this is known as histamine toxicity or scombroid poisoning.
Celiac disease. While celiac disease is sometimes referred to as a gluten allergy, it does not result in anaphylaxis. Like a food allergy, it does involve an immune system response, but it’s a unique reaction that’s more complex than a simple food allergy.
This chronic digestive condition is triggered by eating gluten, a protein found in bread, pasta, cookies, and many other foods containing wheat, barley or rye.
If you have celiac disease and eat foods containing gluten, an immune reaction occurs that causes damage to the surface of your small intestine, leading to an inability to absorb certain nutrients.
Food allergy risk factors include:
- Family history. You’re at increased risk of food allergies if asthma, eczema, hives or allergies such as hay fever are common in your family.
- Other allergies. If you’re already allergic to one food, you may be at increased risk of becoming allergic to another. Similarly, if you have other types of allergic reactions, such as hay fever or eczema, your risk of having a food allergy is greater.
Age. Food allergies are more common in children, especially toddlers and infants. As you grow older, your digestive system matures and your body is less likely to absorb food or food components that trigger allergies.
Fortunately, children typically outgrow allergies to milk, soy, wheat and eggs. Severe allergies and allergies to nuts and shellfish are more likely to be lifelong.
- Asthma. Asthma and food allergy commonly occur together. When they do, both food allergy and asthma symptoms are more likely to be severe.
Factors that may increase your risk of developing an anaphylactic reaction include:
- Having a history of asthma
- Being a teenager or younger
- Delaying use of epinephrine to treat your food allergy symptoms
- Not having hives or other skin symptoms
Complications of food allergy can include:
- Anaphylaxis. This is a life-threatening allergic reaction.
- Atopic dermatitis (eczema). Food allergy may cause a skin reaction, such as eczema.
Early introduction of peanut products has been associated with a lower risk of peanut allergy. Before introducing allergenic foods, talk with your child’s doctor about the best time to offer them.
However, once food allergy has already developed, the best way to prevent an allergic reaction is to know and avoid foods that cause signs and symptoms. For some people, this is a mere inconvenience, but others find it a greater hardship. Also, some foods — when used as ingredients in certain dishes — may be well-hidden. This is especially true in restaurants and in other social settings.
If you know you have a food allergy, follow these steps:
- Know what you’re eating and drinking. Be sure to read food labels carefully.
- If you have already had a severe reaction, wear a medical alert bracelet or necklace that lets others know that you have a food allergy in case you have a reaction and you’re unable to communicate.
- Talk with your doctor about prescribing emergency epinephrine. You may need to carry an epinephrine autoinjector (Adrenaclick, EpiPen) if you’re at risk of a severe allergic reaction.
Be careful at restaurants. Be certain your server or chef is aware that you absolutely can’t eat the food you’re allergic to, and you need to be completely certain that the meal you order doesn’t contain it. Also, make sure food isn’t prepared on surfaces or in pans that contained any of the food you’re allergic to.
Don’t be reluctant to make your needs known. Restaurant staff members are usually more than happy to help when they clearly understand your request.
- Plan meals and snacks before leaving home. If necessary, take a cooler packed with allergen-free foods when you travel or go to an event. If you or your child can’t have the cake or dessert at a party, bring an approved special treat so no one feels left out of the celebration.
If your child has a food allergy, take these precautions to ensure his or her safety:
- Notify key people that your child has a food allergy. Talk with child care providers, school personnel, parents of your child’s friends and other adults who regularly interact with your child. Emphasize that an allergic reaction can be life-threatening and requires immediate action. Make sure that your child also knows to ask for help right away if he or she reacts to food.
- Explain food allergy symptoms. Teach the adults who spend time with your child how to recognize signs and symptoms of an allergic reaction.
- Write an action plan. Your plan should describe how to care for your child when he or she has an allergic reaction to food. Provide a copy of the plan to your child’s school nurse and others who care for and supervise your child.
- Have your child wear a medical alert bracelet or necklace. This alert lists your child’s allergy symptoms and explains how others can provide first aid in an emergency.
Nov. 02, 2019
Food allergy – Diagnosis and treatment
There’s no perfect test used to confirm or rule out a food allergy. Your doctor will consider a number of factors before making a diagnosis. These factors include.
- Your symptoms. Give your doctor a detailed history of your symptoms — which foods, and how much, seem to cause problems.
- Your family history of allergies. Also share information about members of your family who have allergies of any kind.
- A physical examination. A careful exam can often identify or exclude other medical problems.
A skin test. A skin prick test can determine your reaction to a particular food. In this test, a small amount of the suspected food is placed on the skin of your forearm or back. A doctor or another health professional then pricks your skin with a needle to allow a tiny amount of the substance beneath your skin surface.
If you’re allergic to a particular substance being tested, you develop a raised bump or reaction. Keep in mind, a positive reaction to this test alone isn’t enough to confirm a food allergy.
A blood test. A blood test can measure your immune system’s response to particular foods by measuring the allergy-related antibody known as immunoglobulin E (IgE).
For this test, a blood sample taken in your doctor’s office is sent to a medical laboratory, where different foods can be tested.
Elimination diet.You may be asked to eliminate suspect foods for a week or two and then add the food items back into your diet one at a time. This process can help link symptoms to specific foods. However, elimination diets aren’t foolproof.
An elimination diet can’t tell you whether your reaction to a food is a true allergy instead of a food sensitivity. Also, if you’ve had a severe reaction to a food in the past, an elimination diet may not be safe.
- Oral food challenge. During this test, done in the doctor’s office, you’ll be given small but increasing amounts of the food suspected of causing your symptoms. If you don’t have a reaction during this test, you may be able to include this food in your diet again.
The only way to avoid an allergic reaction is to avoid the foods that cause signs and symptoms. However, despite your best efforts, you may come into contact with a food that causes a reaction.
For a minor allergic reaction, over-the-counter or prescribed antihistamines may help reduce symptoms. These drugs can be taken after exposure to an allergy-causing food to help relieve itching or hives. However, antihistamines can’t treat a severe allergic reaction.
For a severe allergic reaction, you may need an emergency injection of epinephrine and a trip to the emergency room. Many people with allergies carry an epinephrine autoinjector (Adrenaclick, EpiPen). This device is a combined syringe and concealed needle that injects a single dose of medication when pressed against your thigh.
If your doctor has prescribed an epinephrine autoinjector:
- Be sure you know how to use the autoinjector. Also, make sure the people closest to you know how to administer the drug — if they’re with you in an anaphylactic emergency, they could save your life.
- Carry it with you at all times. It may be a good idea to keep an extra autoinjector in your car or in your desk at work.
- Always be sure to replace epinephrine before its expiration date or it may not work properly.
While there’s ongoing research to find better treatments to reduce food allergy symptoms and prevent allergy attacks, there isn’t any proven treatment that can prevent or completely relieve symptoms.
Treatments being studied are:
Oral immunotherapy. Researchers have been studying the use of oral immunotherapy as a treatment for food allergy. Small doses of the food you’re allergic to are swallowed or placed under your tongue (sublingual). The dose of the allergy-provoking food is gradually increased.
Results look promising, even in people with peanut, egg and milk allergies.
Early exposure. In the past, it’s been generally recommended that children avoid allergenic foods to reduce the likelihood of developing allergies. But in a recent study, high-risk infants — such as those with atopic dermatitis or egg allergy or both — were selected to either ingest or avoid peanut products from 4 to 11 months of age until 5 years of age.
Researchers found that high-risk children who regularly consumed peanut protein, such as peanut butter or peanut-flavored snacks, were 70% to 86% less likely to develop a peanut allergy.
Explore Mayo Clinic studies testing new treatments, interventions and tests as a means to prevent, detect, treat or manage this condition.
Lifestyle and home remedies
One of the keys to preventing an allergic reaction is to completely avoid the food that causes your symptoms.
Don’t assume. Always read food labels to make sure they don’t contain an ingredient you’re allergic to. Even if you think you know what’s in a food, check the label. Ingredients sometimes change.
Food labels are required to clearly list whether they contain any common food allergens. Read food labels carefully to avoid the most common sources of food allergens: milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish, soy and wheat.
When in doubt, say no thanks. At restaurants and social gatherings, you’re always taking a risk that you might eat a food you’re allergic to. Many people don’t understand the seriousness of an allergic food reaction and may not realize that a tiny amount of a food can cause a severe reaction in some people.
If you have any suspicion at all that a food may contain something you’re allergic to, steer clear.
Involve caregivers. If your child has a food allergy, enlist the help of relatives, baby sitters, teachers and other caregivers. Make sure that they understand how important it is for your child to avoid the allergy-causing food and they know what to do in an emergency.
It’s also important to let caregivers know what steps they can take to prevent a reaction in the first place, such as careful hand-washing and cleaning any surfaces that might have come in contact with the allergy-causing food.
Research on alternative food allergy treatments is limited. However, many people do try them and claim that certain treatments help.
Acupuncture point injection therapy has been found to be beneficial for the treatment of hives, although more research is needed to confirm these findings. If you decide to try one of these treatments, be sure you work with an experienced and certified provider.
Coping and support
A food allergy can be a source of ongoing concern that affects life at home, school and work. Daily activities that are easy for most families, such as grocery shopping and meal preparation, can become occasions of stress for families and caregivers living with food allergies.
Keep these strategies in mind to help manage your or your child’s food allergy-related stress:
Connect with others. The opportunity to discuss food allergies and exchange information with others who share your concerns can be very helpful.
- Educate those around you. Make sure family and caregivers, including baby sitters and school staff, have a thorough understanding of your child’s food allergy.
- Address bullying. Children are often bullied because of food allergies at school. Discussing your child’s allergy with school personnel greatly reduces your child’s risk of being a bullying target.
Many internet sites and nonprofit organizations offer information and forums for discussing food allergies. Some are specifically for parents of children with food allergies. The Food Allergy Research & Education website can direct you to support groups and events in your area.
Preparing for your appointment
Because doctor’s appointments can be brief, and because there’s often a lot of ground to cover, it’s a good idea to be well-prepared for your appointment. Here’s some information to help you get ready for your appointment and what to expect from your doctor.
- Write down any symptoms you’ve had, including any that may seem unrelated to the reason for which you scheduled the appointment.
- Write down key personal information, including any major stresses or recent life changes.
- Make a list of all medications, vitamins and supplements that you’re taking.
- Take a family member or friend along, if possible. Sometimes it can be difficult to remember all the information provided to you during an appointment. Someone who accompanies you may recall something that you missed or forgot.
- Write down questions to ask your doctor.
Your time with your doctor is limited, so preparing a list of questions will help you make the most of your time together. List your questions from most important to least important in case time runs out. Some basic questions to ask your doctor include:
- Is my condition likely caused by a food allergy or another reaction?
- What kinds of tests do I need?
- Is my condition likely temporary or long lasting?
- What types of treatment are available, and which do you recommend?
- What are the alternatives to the primary approach that you’re suggesting?
- I have these other health conditions. How can I best manage these conditions together?
- Are there any dietary restrictions that I need to follow?
- Should I see a specialist? What will that cost, and will my insurance cover seeing a specialist?
- Is there a generic alternative to the medicine you’re prescribing me?
- Do you have any printed material that I can take home with me? What websites do you recommend visiting?
If your child is seeing the doctor for a food allergy, you may also want to ask:
- Is my child likely to outgrow his or her allergy?
- Are there alternatives to the food or foods that trigger my child’s allergy symptoms?
- How can I help keep my child with a food allergy safe at school?
In addition to the questions that you’ve prepared to ask your doctor, don’t hesitate to ask questions during your appointment.
What to expect from your doctor
Your doctor is likely to ask you a number of questions. Being ready to answer them may save time to go over any points you want to spend more time on. Your doctor may ask:
- When did you begin experiencing symptoms?
- How severe were your symptoms?
- How long did it take symptoms to appear after eating the food you suspect you’re allergic to?
- Did you take any over-the-counter allergy medications such as antihistamines, and if so, did they help?
- Does your reaction always seem to be triggered by a certain food?
- How much food did you eat before the reaction?
- Was the food that caused the reaction cooked or raw?
- Do you know how the food was prepared?
- What, if anything, seems to improve your symptoms?
- What, if anything, appears to worsen your symptoms?
What you can do in the meantime
If you suspect you have a food allergy, avoid exposure to the food altogether until your doctor’s appointment. If you do eat the food and have a mild reaction, over-the-counter antihistamines may help relieve symptoms. If you have a more severe reaction and any signs and symptoms of anaphylaxis, seek emergency help.
Nov. 02, 2019
Do I Have Allergies? Signs of Allergies to Watch for
Wondering if your nagging cold is actually an allergy? Or what about your new skin cream that made your hands break out? Distinguishing an allergy from a non-allergic condition is not always a clear-cut task. But knowing the difference can sometimes help you solve what’s ailing you, which in turn could mean faster relief.
Mary Fields knows just how difficult pinpointing an allergy can be. The 64-year-old Bronx resident tells WebMD she was convinced her frequent hives were caused by something in her diet.
“At first I thought I was allergic to chocolate, so I stopped eating that, but it still came back and even started to spread from my arms and legs to my back and thighs,” says the retired nurse’s assistant.
Fields’ dermatologist referred her to allergist David Resnick, MD, FAAAAI, who ran a battery of allergy tests on her. “All the tests came back negative. This isn’t an allergy. Her hives got increasingly worse with stress, which might be a part of it. But her symptoms are idiopathic, meaning their origin is unknown,” says Resnick, who directs the allergy division of New York-Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center.
“I was a little surprised it wasn’t food,” says Fields, who says the hives started when her husband was diagnosed with a heart condition and needed to have a pacemaker implanted. “I was going through a lot of stuff but I didn’t realize I was worrying. So I’m trying to keep myself calm now, to start releasing some of the stress, and I guess I’ll see if that stops the rash.”
Mistaking Allergies: Easy to Do
Fields isn’t alone in thinking an allergy was at the source of her outbreaks. Many people see just about any bad reaction to be an allergy, which isn’t surprising, since more than half of all Americans test positive for at least one allergen, according to the American Academy of Allergy Asthma and Immunology.
Technically speaking, a true allergic reaction happens when the body mounts an unusual immune response to something that’s normally harmless. Most allergy tests check for higher levels of antibodies known as Immunoglobulin E (IgE) in the blood, which are launched by the immune system to fight the invading substance.
As in Fields’ case, food allergy is one of the more regularly misrecognized types of reactions among people trying to self-diagnose. “In general, it’s more common to experience food intolerance than an actual allergy,” says allergy specialist Alan Goldsobel, MD, FAAAAI. “For the majority of people who believe they have one, when they get tested it’s not a true food allergic reaction,” says Goldsobel, who is a clinical professor at the University of California, San Francisco, and adjunct associate professor at Stanford University Medical Center.
Goldsobel points out that although nearly 20% of adults claim they have a food allergy, studies show that only about 2% of adults have a true food allergy based on test results. And whereas almost 30% of parents say they think their child has a food allergy, the actual rates range from only 6% to 8% among children under age 6.
Regardless of whether it’s food or other types of allergy, specialists say they rarely ever have to convince someone they have one. “It’s always the other way around. I’m usually trying to persuade patients that they aren’t allergic to something,” Resnick tells WebMD.
How to Recognize an Allergy
Although you can’t always tell the difference between an allergy and something else for sure, here are some general tips to help distinguish an allergy:
Make a checklist of symptoms. Differentiating nasal allergy problems from cold or viral conditions spells relief for most people because nasal allergy symptoms (also known as allergic rhinitis) affects between 10% to 30% of all adults, but treatment can reduce those symptoms in about 85% of those sufferers. So if you’re not sure if you have one or the other, inventory your symptoms.
“If the list encompasses fever, greenish or yellow-colored mucus, or joint and muscle pain, then it’s more likely a cold,” Resnick says. But if you’ve got sneezing; itchy, red, or watery eyes; clear nasal discharge; or your nose, throat or ears feel scratchy — then he says you’re probably dealing with an allergy.
Timing is everything. The duration and time of year the symptoms occur can be strong clues to identifying their root cause. “Once you find that the symptoms are lasting two or three weeks or even a few months, we say it’s probably not a routine cold,” Goldsobel says.
If nasal allergy symptoms get worse in the spring or fall when pollen counts are generally higher, then it’s more likely to be an allergy. “However, if they happen all the time, then you still have to figure out if you have a year-round allergy, which is commonly due to indoor allergens like dust, pets, or cockroaches,” Resnick says.
It’s not just a gut feeling. “With food allergy, you’re not just looking for gastrointestinal symptoms like stomach cramps, diarrhea, bloating, or upset stomach — you’re also looking for a rash, or respiratory symptoms – something that goes beyond the GI tract,” Goldsobel says. The reason? Food allergies are usually a multiple system reaction. So if just one organ system appears to be involved, it’s more likely to be something else, such as an intolerance, insensitivity or even food poisoning.
Rule out brain and nervous system disorders. According to the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, certain disorders often thought to cause food allergies either do not have enough research to support a link, or they have been disproven to be related. Among them are migraine, hyperactivity in kids, and certain disorders related to brain and central nervous system functioning — mainly characterized by symptoms of fatigue, nervousness, and trouble concentrating combined with headaches. So most likely, you can eliminate food allergies from the list of possible culprits for these symptoms.
“A lot of parents come in saying their child’s behavior or mood or irritability is due to a food allergy, and they’re basically wondering what food is going to make them turn into a well-behaved, calm child – that’s really what’s being asked,” Goldsobel says. “Unbiased research studies show that in the absence of other symptoms, just effects on the brain in terms of thought processes, mood, or behavior are extremely uncommon as a manifestation of food allergy,” he says.
When You Can’t Figure It Out on Your Own
Sometimes it’s nearly impossible to tell if you’re having an allergy short of being examined by a doctor. The prime example: a skin allergy from contact with a substance.
“For the person who is having the symptoms, there is probably no defining difference between allergic contact dermatitis and irritant contact dermatitis – both are going to irritate the skin the same way,” Goldsobel says. Unless you’re tested, it’s not really possible to tell if you’re having an immune response or not. But in the end, the solution is usually the same – avoid contact with whatever is causing the irritation.
If allergy symptoms continue to bother you and at-home treatments (including avoidance of symptom triggers) fail to work, or if you’re still unable to tell if you’re having an allergy or something else, then it’s time to talk to your primary physician or see an allergist for a full evaluation.
How Can You Tell If You’re Having an Allergic Reaction?
As outdoor allergens continue to ramp up, seasonal allergy sufferers are bracing themselves for a return of their symptoms. But many other people deal with the discomfort of allergies seasonally or year-round — without even knowing it
Allergy symptoms can vary widely, so they are often mistaken for other illnesses. And mild allergies can be easy to ignore altogether. However, even mild allergies can become more serious with repeated exposure. This makes it important to recognize and treat symptoms when they occur.
Many people with mild allergies might not be aware that these common symptoms could stem from an allergic reaction.
1. Sinus discomfort
When most people think of allergies, sinus symptoms come to mind first. Common symptoms include a runny or stuffy nose; watery, swollen or itchy eyes; sneezing and nasal congestion. These are often seasonal, but for two-thirds of allergy sufferers, they persist year-round. If you experience sinus symptoms for an extended period or if they worsen seasonally, they may be linked to an undiagnosed allergy.
2. Trouble breathing
Allergens such as ragweed, pollen, dust mites and animal dander can trigger asthmatic symptoms in some people. If you experience unexplained wheezing or shortness of breath, you may be having an allergic reaction. Of course, asthma can have many triggers unrelated to allergens, such as physical activity. Your physician can help you determine the causes of your specific case.
Skin irritation is a tell-tale sign of many allergies. Some people experience eczema, which causes dry, red and itchy patches of skin. Other people may break out in hives — red, itchy welts that generally disappear quickly. However, if your hives last longer than 24 hours, you should consult a physician.
4. Swelling or numbness
In many cases, an untreated food allergy may cause swelling of the lips, face or tongue. Tingling or numbness in the mouth is also possible. These reactions generally begin soon after eating. Keep in mind, though, that you might only be allergic to one ingredient in the food. Or, the food may have been cross-contaminated with traces of a different allergen, such as peanuts or tree nuts. Your physician can administer an allergy test to help you narrow it down.
5. Digestive problems
If you experience abdominal pain, diarrhea, nausea or vomiting soon after eating, food allergies are one possible cause. While many of these symptoms overlap with food intolerances, it is important to note that a food allergy can be triggered even after eating even tiny amounts of an allergen.
Anaphylaxis is a severe reaction to an allergen and requires immediate medical attention. This serious condition can cause throat constriction, a sudden drop in blood pressure, a rapid pulse, dizziness or fainting. If you or a loved one experience anaphylaxis, call 911 immediately.
If you suspect that you might have undiagnosed allergies, making an appointment with your primary care physician at Keck Medicine of USC can help you be proactive about your health and enjoy more symptom-free days. To schedule an appointment, call (800) USC-CARE or visit keckmedicine.org/request-an-appointment.
7 Strange Signs You’re Having an Allergic Reaction
Signs of a reaction
(Image credit: Markson Sparks/Richard Neely/REX/Shutterstock, File)
Dealing with allergies is tough. More than 50 million Americans have some type of allergy, according to the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. Most of the time, the body responds to outdoor and indoor allergens with mild reactions, such as a runny nose or sneezing. Sometimes, the reaction is more severe, such as stomach cramps, dizziness or difficulty breathing. But some people with allergies react in more unusual ways. Here are 7 particularly strange symptoms people have developed during an allergic reaction.
An odd, itchy rash
(Image credit: BSIP/UIG/Getty, File)
An 11-year-old boy developed an itchy rash on his abdomen and under his wristwatch a week after he was fitted for his braces, according to a 2004 case report published in the journal Dermatitis. It turned out, the boy was allergic to the nickel in the braces. The silver-colored metal is often mixed with other metals and is found in coins, jewelry eyeglass frames, key and home fixtures. Nickel is also the most common metal that people have allergic reactions to, and it’s known to cause a red, itchy, bumpy rash.
(Image credit: Kirill Kukhmar/TASS/Getty)
Some people who get permanent tattoos develop strange skin growths. In 2008, University of Maryland researchers reported a case of a 38-year-old man who developed a skin tumor one month after getting a tattoo. In another study, published in 2010 in the Journal of Cutaneous Pathology, researchers analyzed eight people of tattoo-related skin tumors, and found that red tattoo ink was associated with most of the skin tumors. Experts say the skin recognizes the red ink as a foreign substance, and triggers an immune response.
Blisters, hives and swollen skin — from the sun
(Image credit: BSIP/UIG/Getty, File)
There are people who are allergic to the sun and experience symptoms such as blisters, hives and swelling of the skin when they’re exposed to it. According to a 2011 study from researchers in Germany, about 10 to 20 percent of people in Europe, United States and Scandinavia suffer from a sun allergy. The abnormal reaction to sunlight is usually due to ultraviolet rays, according to the Mayo Clinic.
Black spots on the skin
(Image credit: Poison Ivy photo via Shutterstock)
An itchy rash may be a common allergic reaction to poison ivy or poison oak, but there are also rare cases where people develop black spots, according to a 2008 study published in the journal Dermatitis. Black shiny deposits form on the skin and clothing when a high amount of resin, the toxic plants’ oily secretion, is exposed to the air. The researchers said the spots eventually peel off, and the skin heals without scarring.
(Image credit: Markson Sparks/Richard Neely/REX/Shutterstock, File)
People who have hay fever might have something besides hay itself to worry about: Some fruits and vegetables contain proteins similar to those found in hay pollen. They can cause allergies symptoms such as itchiness or swelling of the mouth, face, lip, tongue and throat. Known as oral allergy syndrome, the condition occurs when the immune system behaves as though the protein found in some fruits and vegetables and the pollen in the air are the same. The syndrome affects up to one-third of allergy sufferers and can occur at anytime, according to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology.
A bright red butt
(Image credit: Baboon photo via Shutterstock)
People exposed to certain metals, medications and plants or herbs, can develop Baboon Syndrome. That’s right, the condition means developing a bright red rash, primarily on the butt, closely resembling a baboon’s butt, according to research reports. The red rash can appear on the anus, genitals and inner thighs, and can be itchy and painful, but the syndrome doesn’t pose any serious health risks. Exposure to metals such as mercury, gold and nickel, can trigger a reaction, according to 2011 review in the American Journal of Clinical Dermatology. Recent studies have shown that antibiotics and antibacterials administered by mouth, intravenously or on the skin can also trigger the reaction.
Shortness of breath — thanks to onions?
(Image credit: Carsten Koall/Getty)
When you think of a physical reaction to onions, teary eyes probably come to mind.
But an onion farmer in Japan developed a cough and shortness of breath after spending too much time around the root veggies, according to a 2018 case report published in the journal Respiratory Medicine Case Reports.
It turned out that the man had allergy to a type of mold, called Aspergillus niger, that was growing on the onion peels. The mold can cause a condition called hypersensitivity pneumonitis, which occurs when the tiny air sacs in the lungs, known as alveoli, become inflamed.
The man’s symptoms went away when he wasn’t at work, and he was advised to wear a thick filtered mask while working with onions.
Originally published on Live Science.
Diagnosing Allergies | ACAAI Public Website
Anywhere from 40 to 50 million people in the U.S. have allergies or asthma. These diseases are so common that it might seem like the diagnosis and treatment are straightforward and that any doctor should be able to administer the most effective therapies. However, allergists are experts in their field with specialized training that allows them to:
- Perform allergy testing
- Identify the source of your suffering
- Accurately diagnose your condition
- Treat more than just your symptoms
- Develop a personalized plan that eliminates your symptoms
- Provide you with the most cost-effective care that produces the best results
Two key steps in the process of allergy diagnosis are the medical history and allergy test selection. Allergists use their skills in these areas to help more patients feel well, stay active during the day, and rest at night. And that’s nothing to sneeze at.
Why Take a Medical History?
When it comes to human allergic disease, an individual’s medical history is as important as the results of an allergy test. Medical history is the critical link between allergy test results and allergic disease itself.
Allergy skin testing is the gold standard and is used along with the medical history to establish a diagnosis. Both blood and skin allergy tests can detect a patient’s sensitivity to common inhalants like pollen and dust mites or to medicines, certain foods, latex, venom, or other substances. Generally skin testing is the most accurate and preferred method used by trained allergists. Allergy blood tests may be ordered in certain specific situations, such as severe skin rashes, or if it is impossible to stop a medication that interferes with the interpretation of the skin test.
If the results of skin and blood allergy tests are not clear or are inconsistent with the patient’s medical history, allergists rely on their training and experience along with a patient’s medical history and a physical examination—not test results—to make the final diagnosis.
Research confirms what allergists already know: Allergy tests are valuable for their ability to give accurate and reliable results that confirm information gathered in the medical history.
Why Is Allergy Test Choice Important?
An important related consideration is for health practitioners to choose the right test, the one best able to aid the diagnostic process. For many reasons, that’s not an easy job. Allergy patients are often sensitized to many allergens, but are only clinically allergic to one or more specific substances. Allergists are trained to select tests that pinpoint the relevant allergen, which enables them to develop optimal therapies for each patient.
Board-certified allergists recognize that not all allergy tests are alike. They regularly review the scientific literature to learn which testing systems work better than others and the laboratory practices that may affect test results.
Allergy tests should not be ordered randomly, either. They are chosen based on symptoms, environmental and occupational exposures, age, and even hobbies. All results are then interpreted in the context of the patient’s medical history.
Get the facts: Find answers with an allergist.
Signs You’re Having an Allergic Reaction and When to See the Doctor
If you experience itching, welts, or hives after eating certain foods, you may have a food allergy.
Hives are not to be ignored.
“Almost all allergies are associated with some type of skin symptom, especially food allergies,” Dr. Parikh told Insider. “This can be anything from itching in your skin, your tongue, and your throat, to hives, eczema or redness.”
Eczema is red, itchy inflamed skin, whereas hives are raised welts that appear in clusters.
Dr. Parikh said it’s important to note that the presence of skin-related symptoms (like a rash) is one of the biggest differences between food allergies and food intolerances. This is because allergies activate your entire immune system, whereas an intolerance may only affect certain areas like digestion.
“There are skin symptoms in almost 90% of allergic reactions to food,” Dr. Parikh told Insider.
In other words, while something like lactose intolerance may cause you to experience symptoms such as gas or bloating, you probably won’t develop hives if you drink a small amount of milk. On the other hand, if you have a hazelnut allergy and take even a bite of some chocolate hazelnut toast, you may expect to develop welts all over your face, arms, stomach, and legs.
Skin reactions to food can occur as soon as a few minutes after eating the allergen, though sometimes they can take hours to appear. And to make matters more complicated, sometimes you won’t experience severe hives the first time or even every time you interact with the food, says Dr. Parikh.
“Sometimes a reaction can get worse the more you keep eating it,” she said. “Because food allergies are more likely to cause the more dangerous, anaphylactic reactions, we still tell people with mild reactions to avoid that particular food. We can’t predict when it will be severe versus not.”
This is why it’s a good idea to visit your doctor even if you experience mild symptoms after eating.
90,000 How do you know what you are allergic to? – MC Family
Allergic manifestations are nothing more than an acute reaction of the body to a certain irritating factor, which can be determined both by observation, experience and the method of exclusion, and by conducting complex studies in laboratory conditions.
That is, there are several ways to find out what the child is allergic to, but first of all, you need to familiarize yourself with the most common causes of such manifestations. So, puzzling about how to find out what the allergy is, you need to remember that most often this reaction provokes:
- street, building or household dust,
- pet hair,
- seasonal bloom, when pollen of specific plants enters the air,
- insect bites,
- mold and fungal spores,
- as well as tick waste products.
In addition, the following can provoke an acute allergic reaction:
- certain food items,
- household chemicals,
- taking medications (most often of the penicillin group),
- as well as the use of synthetic fabrics for wearing, sleeping at night and in everyday life ( in particular, we are talking about latex ).
Those people who have undergone forced or indicated blood transfusions are also at risk, as an allergy to a foreign protein contained in any plasma may develop.As for young children, most often they have an acute reaction in the form of an allergic rash or other clinical manifestations to certain foods.
And in most cases, eggs, cow’s milk, chocolate, strawberries, citrus fruits, tomatoes, herbs, nuts, fish and seafood, as well as soy and wheat dishes are to blame. It is not so difficult to exclude such a development of the situation – it is enough just to introduce into the child’s diet no more than one new product per day, while carefully monitoring the reaction of his body.In addition, overeating of certain foods or ingredients should not be allowed, since even habitual foods consumed in excessive quantities can provoke such negative consequences.
If an allergic reaction begins to manifest itself exclusively at a certain time of the year, then you should look for the cause elsewhere, analyzing whether seasonal flowering can lead to this. At the same time, one should not assume that such complications are completely safe for the body, while waiting for it to adapt to the stimulus and negative symptoms will pass without outside help and stimulation.And all because ignoring allergy therapy often leads to even more serious ailments and consequences, among which bronchial asthma and anaphylactic shock are most often distinguished.
That is why, at the slightest manifestations of allergies, it is urgently necessary to seek help from a qualified allergist, who will help to make the correct diagnosis and prescribe adequate treatment. And for this, you should familiarize yourself with what symptoms of an acute allergic reaction exist depending on its type.
So, respiratory allergies are characterized by such manifestations as:
- unproductive coryza, in which clear watery mucus flows from the nose, severe itching,
- frequent and prolonged sneezing,
- persistent irritating cough,
- and a little less often wheezing and whistling in the lungs
- the ocular conjunctiva can sometimes be affected, against the background of which allergic conjunctivitis develops, accompanied by edema, profuse lacrimation, itching and the formation of purulent sour oxides.
For dermatous type allergies become characteristic:
- itching and redness of the skin,
- peeling, dryness,
- multiple blistering,
- as well as increased edema.
Incorrectly selected products or drugs can lead to a more severe allergic reaction, which specialists call enteropathy. In this case, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, accompanied by severe intestinal colic, or even swelling of the lingual or palatal part may be added to any of the above symptoms.
But the most dangerous manifestation of an acute allergic reaction is rightfully considered anaphylactic shock, because the lack of adequate measures aimed at its timely neutralization can easily lead to death. As for the manifestations of this severe complication, it is usually expressed in the form of severe shortness of breath, severe convulsions and spasms, deep fainting, numerous rashes, uncontrolled urination and bowel movements, vomiting.At the same time, many people are interested in the question of whether it is possible to find out what the allergy is, if it is not possible to establish the root cause on your own. In this case, we can only recommend one thing – urgently contact an experienced allergist with the slightest suspicion of an allergy . And the easiest way to confirm or deny this phenomenon is by conducting special skin tests, involving the introduction of a small amount of an irritant (allergen) under the skin.This technique helps to very quickly establish the presence of an allergy, and most importantly, to determine its type, focusing on the manifestation of the reaction.
If you urgently need a good allergist or immunologist for an adult or a child, want to carry out allergy diagnostics, immunogram or any laboratory tests – YOU JUST COME TO US! An allergist-immunologist from the Department of Clinical Immunology and Allergology of the Rostov State Medical University, Vita Yakovlevna Zakurskaya, is receiving an appointment at the Semya Medical Center at 11 Morozova Street.
Examination and treatment will allow you not only to get rid of the manifestations of allergies today, but also to prevent them in the future, without the need for constant medication. Our new methods of treatment and prevention of allergies will allow you to reduce or eliminate the influence of allergens and your dependence on anti-allergens.
90,000 How to recognize a dust allergy and can it be cured?
The eyes, the respiratory system, the skin can react to the allergen, either individually, or immediately in combination.How dust allergy manifests itself depends on the individual characteristics of the organism and its sensitivity to various substances. Symptoms of an allergic reaction are:
- runny nose,
- redness of eyes, puffiness,
- itching and burning of the skin,
The consequences of allergy manifestations can be difficulty in breathing, a debilitating cough, leading to attacks of bronchial asthma, chest pains.Constant unsuccessful attempts of the body to cope with the problem lead to chronic fatigue and a decrease in the standard of living.
The organic compounds that make up the dust get into the apartment from the street, from our shoes and clothes, and from pets. Street dust is plant pollen, particles of earth, gravel, asphalt, microparticles that penetrate windows with wind and smoke. Household air pollutants are cellulose from book pages and wallpaper, molds.Dust mites living in furniture and bed linen are strong allergens. They feed on the cells of the human epidermis, releasing special enzymes for their breakdown, which provoke an allergic reaction.
Types of dust allergies
- When an allergen penetrates inside, the body tries to get rid of a foreign substance – hence sneezing and runny nose appear. Rhinitis of an allergic nature is manifested by nasal flow, sneezing, congestion. A runny nose and sneezing are usually early manifestations of allergies, later other symptoms are added to them.Sometimes an infection is added to an allergic rhinitis, then the mucus changes its consistency and color.
- Allergic conjunctivitis is manifested by lacrimation, redness and inflammation of both eyes, reaching angioedema. Re-infection causes the separation of purulent secretions, sticking of eyelashes, inability to open the eyes.
- Allergic dermatitis is an inflammation of the skin that occurs after local contact. Rashes on household dust are usually localized on the wrists and hands, neck, décolleté, elbow and knee joints.It can be dryness, peeling of the skin, redness, less often – weeping areas, ulcers, cracks.
- A skin reaction is also possible in the form of urticaria – blisters protruding above the surface of the skin and merging into a single spot, edema, accompanied by itching and burning.
- Possible cracks in the corners of the lips, inflammation of the skin around them.
In order to start treatment, it is necessary to undergo a diagnosis that will accurately establish the type of allergen that causes an acute atypical immune response.For this, in the absence of contraindications, allergy tests are carried out – tests that consist in skin contact with the alleged allergen. Samples can be:
- application, when a cloth or cotton impregnated with a substance is applied to the skin;
- scarification, when an allergen is applied to the skin in the forearm area, making scratches with a needle or lancet;
- injectable – the so-called prick tests.
Also, the patient of the allergist will have to pass an immunological blood test to identify the level of immunoglobulins E, an increase in which is evidence of an allergic reaction occurring in the body.The test for antibodies of the IgG and IgE classes allows you to study the reaction to certain groups of substances. This analysis also gives an idea about the intensity of the reaction, the time of its onset.
Can dust allergies be cured?
Allergy treatment involves an integrated approach. The first step is to exclude or at least minimize the patient’s contact with the allergen. In the case of household dust, this is not easy, but regular wet cleaning can significantly alleviate the condition of an allergic person.
Medication includes taking antihistamines, which will improve your well-being, significantly or completely relieve symptoms.
The most effective way to get rid of allergies today is ASIT therapy. Unlike drugs, allergen-specific immunotherapy fights not with the symptoms of the disease, but with its causes, reducing the body’s sensitivity to irritants. Therapy consists in the introduction of small doses of the allergen or applying it to the skin for a gradual habituation of the body.ASIT is carried out during the period of clinical remission of an allergic reaction; for household allergens, therapy is possible at any time of the year.
After a course that can last three to five years, a stable remission is usually observed. Allergies must be treated under medical supervision.
- Methods for preventing dust allergy include reducing contact with irritating microparticles.
- The apartment should be cleaned regularly, bed linen should be changed, and dust collectors – carpets, soft toys – should be disposed of.
- It is better to use blankets and pillows with synthetic filling, and for air purification purchase a household purifier with a humidification function.
- Before the onset of the period when allergies usually occur, take medications prescribed by a doctor for the purpose of prophylaxis.
- In case of a cold, use nasal sprays that protect the mucous membrane from allergens.
What does VERAMED offer?
We have been successfully treating various types of allergies in our patients for a long time.Experience allows us to speak about the success of therapy in most cases. In clinics in Odintsovo and Zvenigorod you can get help from immunologists, allergists, dermatologists and any other specialized specialists.
In our centers you can visit a doctor, take tests, undergo allergy tests and receive a specific therapy prescription, taking into account the individual characteristics of an allergic disease.
Make an appointment by phone and ask qualified doctors your questions.
Can I be allergic to the coronavirus vaccine?
According to the President’s official statement at a meeting with members of the government, mass vaccination against COVID-19 will begin on January 18, 2021. In this regard, citizens have many questions, but people suffering from all sorts of allergies are most worried about one thing: “Can the coronavirus vaccine cause allergies?” We tried to reveal the answer to this question in our article.
Allergic reaction to vaccination – myth or reality?
Comments on this issue are given by Tatyana Borisovna Gubinskaya, an allergist-immunologist, a pediatrician at the AllergoCity Medical Center.
According to various sources, approximately 20% to 40% of people have one or another allergy, which can be caused by aeroallergens (including pollen), food and drugs. These various allergies manifest themselves in different ways: in the form of allergic bronchial asthma, contact dermatitis, allergic rhinitis, conjunctivitis, food allergies or urticaria, and in the worst case, in the form of anaphylactic shock.
On January 29, 2021, Dr. Gary J. Stadtmauer, MD published a post that highlighted the risks of anaphylaxis and severe allergic reactions in patients after they were vaccinated against Covid-19. A total of 21 confirmed cases of anaphylaxis were reported after the first 1.8 million doses of Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine (approximately 1 in 87,000 injections). Although rare, this risk is significantly higher than the risk associated with other vaccines (1.3 per million).
All recorded episodes of anaphylaxis occurred within 30 minutes after the administration of the vaccine. Not a single fatal case was recorded. Of the 21 cases identified, 5 patients had a food allergy (food allergen not specified), of which 3 also had a history of drug allergy. In total, 12 patients were previously allergic to drugs or vaccines, and one patient had allergic reactions to household allergens.
Prior to this announcement, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) published data on delayed reactions following Moderna vaccination in the form of isolated facial edema in patients who had previously undergone cosmetic procedures with the introduction of various types of fillers. The timing of drug administration ranged from 6 months before vaccination to 2 days after vaccination.
Polyethylene glycol (PEG), which is present in both Moderna and Pfizer vaccines to stabilize mRNA, is considered the most likely cause of adverse allergic reactions following vaccine administration.
From the point of view of the development of adverse effects after vaccination, reactions to PEG were extremely rare before these cases. In theory, the high molecular weight of PEG may be immunogenic. However, earlier reactions to PEG were identified as the cause of drug allergies, local reactions to toothpaste, contact allergic dermatitis when using cosmetic products that contain PEG.
Unfortunately, in Russia today, diagnostics are not available that would allow a preliminary allergological examination, which complicates the assessment of risks.Therefore, in this case, we can only talk about an empirical analysis of the allergic history, based on the data of which it will be possible to judge the probable risks.
It can only be stated for sure that during vaccination with drugs that use an adenoviral vector, and not mRNA (domestic vaccines against COVID-19), there can be no anaphylaxis on PEG. However, as with any vaccination, allergic reactions to the drugs administered are possible. In this case, the question remains: “What is their frequency?” Clinical observations, which will be carried out in the future, will provide more complete characteristics of the incidence of post-vaccination complications when using vaccines against Sars-Cov-2.
In general, recommendations for Sars-Cov-2 vaccination in susceptible patients do not differ from those for standard vaccination. In case of development of undesirable consequences after vaccination, repeated administration of the drug is strictly contraindicated.
What do we know about COVID-19 vaccine allergy today?
Joint development of American and German scientists – Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine (mRNA): 4.7 cases of anaphylaxis per 1 million doses administered.It is also known that 80% of people who develop anaphylaxis to this vaccine have previously experienced allergies to other substances. The preparation contains a stabilizer polyethylene glycol (PEG, PEG 2000). If a person already has a suspicion (or confidence) that they are allergic to PEG, then they should consult with an allergist before vaccination.
American vaccine Moderna (mRNA): 2.5 cases of anaphylaxis per 1 million doses administered. 86% of those vaccinated with this drug who developed anaphylaxis already had experience of allergy to other compounds.This vaccine also contains PEG, with all the implications that follow.
British vaccine Oxford / AstraZeneca (mRNA): about 10 cases of anaphylaxis per 1 million doses administered. Contains another stabilizer – polysorbate 80. This substance can also cause allergies, albeit extremely rarely, in 0.5-1.47% of cases. But doctors talk about cross-reactivity between polysorbate-80 and PEG. That is, in the case of this British vaccine, if you are allergic to PEG, it is better to consult a specialist about vaccination.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) makes the following recommendations for vaccinating people with allergic reactions:
If a person is allergic to any of the components of the mRNA vaccine, then, regardless of the severity of the reaction, they should not be vaccinated with this type of vaccine at this time. For example, if you are allergic to PEG and polysorbate, you cannot vaccinate with mRNA vaccines containing these components.
If a person develops an allergic reaction to the first dose of the vaccine, they should not receive a second dose of the same type of drug.
In any case, allergies to components or to the introduction of a vaccine, as well as allergies to any other vaccines and medications – the issue of vaccination against coronavirus should be resolved only with a doctor.
People with allergies not related to vaccines or medications, such as allergies to pets, food, or a family history of allergies, can and should be vaccinated against COVID-19 regardless of the severity of the allergic reaction.
As for the Chinese vaccines from the companies Sinovac (inactivated), CanSino Biologics (vector adenoviral), Sinopharm (inactivated): there are no data on the cases of anaphylaxis yet.
Regarding the Russian vaccine Sputnik V (vector adenovirus), there is currently no information on registered cases of anaphylaxis. However, the drug contains polysorbate 80, and the instructions contain a warning about possible allergic reactions.So it can be assumed that the recommendations voiced by the specialists of the CDC for mRNA vaccines are applicable for him.
Head of the Center. Gamalei A. Gintsburg recommended that allergy sufferers, before being vaccinated with Sputnik V, be tested for C-reactive protein and IgE immunoglobulins, which show the risk of developing allergic complications at the moment. If both of these indicators are normal, you can safely go to get vaccinated even if you have a history of allergies.
Russian vaccine “EpiVacCorona” (peptide): no cases of anaphylaxis have been reported.It contains aluminum hydroxide, so this drug is contraindicated in people with hypersensitivity to this substance, as well as in people with severe allergies.
Russian vaccine “KoviVac” (inactivated): no cases of anaphylaxis reported. However, the list of contraindications includes severe allergic reactions in the form of anaphylaxis, Quincke’s edema and eczema. For common allergies, the drug can be administered.
Coronavirus vaccination rules for allergy sufferers
The presence of allergic diseases is not an absolute contraindication to vaccination.But allergy sufferers should first consult with an allergist.
It is forbidden to be vaccinated at a time when an exacerbation of allergic diseases is taking place.
If you have an allergy, but at the time of vaccination there is no exacerbation, you can get vaccinated if you are under the supervision of a doctor within the hospital.
It is always necessary to remember that there are exceptions to the rules.
Nevertheless, there are exceptions to any rule, and there is a risk of developing anaphylactic shock.Therefore, a person must remain under observation in a medical facility for at least half an hour to prevent the development of an acute allergic reaction.
Everyone should make the decision on vaccination for themselves, but specialists can help make an informed decision. At the AllergoCity medical center, you can get an appointment with an allergist and get tested on any day of the week. Recording is carried out both by phone and online on the site. Come – our doctors will be happy to advise you.
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Psychosomatics of Allergy – Life Rebirth
Each of us noticed that after severe stress, long chronic stress , in most cases we get sick.At a young age, these are more often colds, the occurrence of which does not cause much surprise, well, I ate ice cream, drank from the refrigerator, wet my feet, sat under the air conditioner …
At the age when there is already a small or large bouquet of chronic diseases, an unexpected exacerbation occurs, which, however, we are also not surprised at, since we are accustomed to the fact that those who have diseases, no, no, they are exacerbated … And the reason is precisely in weakening of the body with strong negative emotions, a decrease in immunity due to them.
Allergy is an overreaction of the body to an allergen to which the majority of the population does not have any reaction.
The linking of serious illnesses with accumulated emotions began a long time ago, when the category of psychosomatic illnesses was identified. And many researchers described in detail the tables of correspondence of diseases to experienced emotions.
Allergy , according to psychosomatics, occurs in those individuals who desperately do not accept something in their life, refuse to accept, protest against the injustices of life, but, due to upbringing or fear of the consequences, do not allow themselves an open protest …
The patient is not satisfied with the circumstances of his life, but has to endure them. He does not do what he wants, on the contrary, forces himself to unloved, but necessary activities. Often needed by someone else – a boss, a partner in marriage, parents, children. And allergy becomes necessary in order to be able to abandon violence against oneself.
Of course, a person living under such pressure experiences a lot of negative emotions, anxiety keeps him in constant tension. And the patient endlessly mobilizes himself in order to be ready to fight back at any moment.
And he takes for enemies not only people, someone’s unflattering statements, but also dust, pollen, food quite harmless for many … People who have allergies in their anamnesis are very touchy, subconsciously believing that if they do so much for others, regardless of their desires, the same should be done in response to those around.
And if this does not happen, suppressed aggression occurs, which is not expressed verbally, but results in edema, inflammatory reactions in the nasopharynx, organs of vision, and skin rashes.
If, for example, a person “cannot stand someone’s spirit”, he causes severe irritation, then this predisposes to the development of allergies to pollen, dust, and subsequently allergic bronchitis, bronchial asthma. Another variant of irritation, when the environment is causing the negative, something that comes in close contact with a person can affect the skin and cause dermatitis and eczema.
In order to recover from an allergy or at least significantly weaken its symptoms, it is necessary to resolve internal contradictions, learn how to relax qualitatively, and finally determine what benefits allergy brings to you.
For many, it sounds blasphemous when they hear or read that their excruciating illness can be beneficial. This is an absolutely human reaction, to say “nonsense, nonsense” and walk by without even thinking, or maybe there is something in it … By the way, this reaction is most typical for ALLERGICS.
It is so tempting to consider yourself a sinless martyr who has been attacked by an evil disease. And what is in practice? Ask yourself what allergies can help you avoid? What changes in your life are you afraid of? What will happen if you express your protest not on a physical level through spewing snot, coughing, but express it directly? Who is so unpleasant to you that you are ready to tear your skin (itching), just not to contact him?
You will be able to deal with your own internal contradictions – wonderful!
If you can’t do it yourself, come to the consultation of a psychologist at the Medical Center “Revival of Life”.
WE WILL HELP YOU!
90,000 What if you are allergic to pollen?
Allergy to pollen, or hay fever, is a seasonal disease that is clearly manifested during the period of active flowering of various plants. Caused by pollen that acts on the mucous membranes of the eyes, nose and upper respiratory tract. The immune system mistakenly perceives pollen as a danger and gives an extremely strong immune response – it begins to actively produce antibodies to fight the imaginary enemy. The body rapidly produces histamine, which provokes various allergic reactions.
There are several so-called pollen waves:
- from March to April during flowering deciduous trees;
- from May to July, when it is the turn of cereals and meadow grasses;
- from August to September during the flowering period of wormwood, quinoa, corn and sunflower.
Pollen allergy symptoms
- allergic rhinitis, manifested by frequent sneezing, runny nose and nasal congestion;
- conjunctivitis, which is characterized by discomfort, swelling of the eyelids, redness, tearing and burning of the eyes;
- sore throat;
- feeling of increased fatigue, general malaise, decreased concentration;
- shortness of breath, shortness of breath, cough, wheezing.
Symptoms can appear in isolation or in combination with each other. When scratching the nose and eyes, complications often develop.
Among them there are:
- hereditary predisposition;
- weak immune system;
- chronic pathologies of the respiratory tract;
- severe, unhealthy working conditions in chemical and industrial industries;
- unfavorable state of ecology;
- the presence of allergies of another type (food, medication).
Distinguish between mild, moderate and severe. The greatest danger is moderate and severe hay fever. In this case, the course of the disease may be complicated by the addition of a secondary infection – bronchitis, pneumonia, purulent conjunctivitis, sinusitis. Some patients with hay fever are accompanied by food allergies, which can occur all year round. For example, an allergy to apple pollen is combined with an intolerance to the fruit of this tree – apples.In this case, the allergy is accompanied by itching, swelling and soreness in the mouth and throat.
Often, symptomatic hay fever is confused with vasomotor rhinitis, as a result of which the wrong treatment tactics are chosen, which does not bring the desired results.
Diagnosis of pollinosis
- For diagnosis, the allergist carefully collects a clinical history, asking the patient in as much detail as possible about all the manifestations of hay fever.
- Skin tests can help identify allergies.Small particles of allergens are placed on the skin, small scratches are made in the places of application. According to the local reaction to certain irritants, a conclusion is drawn whether a person has an allergy.
- Also, in some cases, they resort to a blood test for the presence of allergic antibodies.
Pollen Allergy Treatment
There are many remedies that allow, if not to get rid of completely, then at least to alleviate the symptoms of hay fever. It is:
- nasal sprays;
- apparatus for washing the sinuses of the nose;
- eye drops.
People with severe allergies are usually prescribed two types of medication:
- sublingual tablets;
- allergy shots. They are an effective means of immunotherapy. These are a series of injections that desensitize allergens and relieve symptoms. This is a long-term therapy that takes several years.
In any case, before starting medication, it is necessary to consult an allergist to determine the severity of the allergy, select the appropriate treatment tactics, monitor its effectiveness and correct therapy if necessary.
An important factor in successful treatment is the early start of taking medications. For example, if the allergy usually manifests itself in April, the doctor will recommend the patient to take medication from March. Such preventive measures can significantly reduce the symptoms of allergic reactions.
In addition, there are a number of other rules, the observance of which helps to alleviate the condition with hay fever.
- Do wet cleaning in the house as often as possible.
- Use a humidifier that keeps pollen and dust from moving freely around your home.
- Wash your hands and face thoroughly after being outdoors.
- Shower at least twice a day.
- Returning from the street, immediately change into your home clothes.
- In hot and dry weather, especially a lot of pollen accumulates in the air, so on such days try not to leave the house unnecessarily.
- If, nevertheless, you need to leave the house, it is better to do it in the afternoon, as the pollen spreads especially strongly in the morning, from 5 to 11 o’clock.
- The pollen concentration is lower after rain, this time can be used for walking.
- Flush the nose with saline solutions to protect the nasal mucosa from possible allergens.
- If you use cosmetics, during an exacerbation, change your usual products to hypoallergenic ones.
- Wear gloves and respirators when working in the garden.
- In the house, keep the windows closed, turn on the air conditioner. If not, you can cover the windows with damp towels, which will prevent pollen from entering the house.The pollen content in the air is equally high at the 15-17 floor level. So these rules are equally important for all hay fever sufferers.
- Drive the car with closed windows and set the air conditioner to recirculation mode.
- Wear goggles to protect your eyes from pollen particles.
- The best option is to leave for the flowering period in another region where there are no herbs or trees that cause allergies. However, it is worth remembering that some plants belong to the same botanical group and can provoke similar allergic reactions.Therefore, it is worth carefully studying the flora of the region in which you are going to “hide” from hay fever.
Pollen allergy is an unpleasant seasonal disease, the symptoms of which can still be mitigated if you follow all the doctor’s recommendations and strictly follow the rules that alleviate the condition with hay fever.
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The physician told how to recognize an allergy – Rossiyskaya Gazeta
How to distinguish hay fever caused by an allergic reaction to pollen from a cold.And how to treat seasonal allergies. The head of the department of hygiene of children and adolescents of the Federal Center for Medical and Preventive Technologies for Managing Public Health Risks, Candidate of Medical Sciences Svetlana Valina told about this, the website “aif.ru” reports.
Pollinosis can occur in spring, summer and autumn. In April-May, allergy sufferers react to the flowering of birch, alder, maple, hazel, in June-July – cereal grasses, in August-September – weeds.
“The peak incidence of hay fever occurs in a fairly wide age group – from 10 to 40 years, – said Valina.- For those who are younger and older, seasonal allergies are less common. And yet we are already registering isolated cases of hay fever in four-year-old children. This is due to the deterioration of the environmental situation, air pollution with chemicals. They increase the allergenicity of pollen, increase the cycle of its viability, increase the susceptibility of the respiratory tract to allergens. ”
Valina notes that hay fever is easy to confuse with the common cold, but there are signs that can help distinguish diseases from each other.In 95% of cases, seasonal allergy manifests itself in the same way: it is characterized by redness and pain in the eyes, swelling of the eyelids, lacrimation, itching of the palate and in the ears, sore throat, coughing, sneezing several times in a row, nasal congestion, watery, colorless discharge from the nose. And this is against the background of the absence of increased body temperature. With hay fever, an exacerbation of atopic dermatitis, bronchial asthma, urticaria, Quincke’s edema is possible.
In case of such symptoms it is necessary to consult an allergist.The doctor will prescribe special tests that will help to understand the nature of the disease and identify allergens to which a particular organism reacts.
“In spring and summer, when everything is in bloom, blood is taken for analysis to determine allergen-specific immunoglobulins. This helps to identify the active allergen. There is another method – skin tests, but they are done outside the flowering season, in winter or late autumn. When the allergen is clear, prescribe treatment, which always includes anti-inflammatory, antihistamines, vasoconstrictor drugs, sorbents.Those who know about their diagnosis, prepare in advance, starting treatment in winter, “- said Valina.
Some nonspecific preventive measures can alleviate the condition with pollinosis. period early in the morning, do not leave the house. On the street, you must wear sunglasses and a hat, and after a walk, take a shower and change clothes; you also need to regularly do wet cleaning at home. such a phenomenon as cross-allergy “, and” the use of certain vegetables, fruits, cereals can intensify its manifestations. “
“Depending on when you have an allergic reaction, it is worth giving up some foods. If in April-May, it is better to exclude apples, raw carrots, stone fruits (cherries, cherries, peaches, etc.), nightshades from the diet. (tomatoes, potatoes). In June-July – to limit the use of bakery products, bran, cereals, beer, kvass, coffee substitutes, sausages. In August-September – melons (melons, watermelons), zucchini, eggplants, sunflower seeds, halva , citrus fruits, honey, and from alcoholic beverages – vermouth “, – stressed Valina.
Cat Allergy – Allergist Medical Center
According to the statistics of the World Health Organization, more than 15% of the world’s population suffers from cat allergies to one degree or another.
Different people may show one or more of the following symptoms:
- runny nose or nasal congestion;
- irritability or watery eyes;
- manifestations similar to those of asthma – cough, wheezing, shortness of breath;
- redness of the skin where the cat has scratched, bitten or licked.
Symptoms can appear both immediately after contact with the cat, and after a few hours. Approximately 30% of people with asthma will experience an exacerbation of symptoms after contact with a cat.
If you have an allergy, and there is a cat at home, then, unfortunately, it is better to get rid of it.
Sometimes it happens that it seems impossible for a cat to find another place of residence – there is no one to pick it up, his other half is madly in love, children are used to it.In this case, you need to objectively assess your condition. If there is a cough, wheezing, shortness of breath, then you will have to part with your pet, otherwise the condition will worsen. Allergy to cat hair, like other allergic reactions, leads to rather unpleasant consequences. In the case of constant exposure to the allergen, irritability increases, immunity decreases, and fatigue increases. In addition, cat allergies often cause diseases such as allergic rhinitis, conjunctivitis, eczema and bronchial asthma.
If the symptoms are limited to reddening of the skin, and you are absolutely not ready to part with the cat, then simple rules will help you keep the allergy under control:
1. Avoid contact with the cat, do not touch it or pet it.
2. Keep out of your room where you sleep.
3. Avoid close contact with people who have pets, as hair can remain on clothing for a long time.
4. Before going to visit relatives or friends, check if they have a cat at home and ask in advance not to let him into the room in which they plan to temporarily accommodate you, at least two weeks before your arrival.At the same time, start taking the necessary medications to help you avoid an allergic reaction.
5. Clean up the apartment as often as possible, and more reinforced in those corners where your kitty likes to be most of all.
6. Replace long-haired carpets with less shaggy rugs and curtains that can attract other allergens such as dust and other.