Monday, September 8, 2008

Anaphylaxis Causes

Anaphylaxis is a serious allergic reaction that occurs in response to a particular trigger. Knowing the symptoms of anaphylaxis may save your life or the life of someone you love.

Allergy Triggers

The most commonly documented causes of anaphylaxis are:

Food: Food allergies are an increasingly common cause of anaphylaxis that result in about 125 deaths each year in the United States.

Medications: Although the exact incidence of medication allergies is unknown, serious allergic reactions to medications cause the most allergy-associated deaths in the United States every year.

Insect venom: Insect allergies are common , especially allergies to members of the Hymenoptera order of insects.

Latex: Latex allergies now affect an estimated 1% to 6% of the U.S. population and the reasons for the increase in incidence can be attributed to biohazard precautions and manufacturing changes.

Exercise: Exercise-induced anaphylaxis is a form of physical allergy.

In situations where a specific trigger remains unidentified, the patient is said to suffer from idiopathic anaphylaxis.

To learn more about common triggers that cause allergic reactions, please review the material found in food, medication, insect venom, or latex allergies.

Although comprehensive information is not available, the best estimates indicate that as many as 40.9 million people in the United States suffer from severe allergies that may put them at risk for anaphylaxis—and the numbers are growing. This growth has been attributed to the increased exposure to allergens such as latex, peanuts, and insects, particularly fire ants. Moreover, researchers are uncovering a large incidence of anaphylactic drug reactions that have gone unnoticed or were poorly documented in the past.


The most distinctive symptoms of anaphylaxis include:

* Hives
* Swelling of the throat, lips, tongue, or around the eyes
* Difficulty breathing or swallowing

Other common symptoms of anaphylaxis may include:

* A metallic taste or itching in the mouth
* Generalized flushing, itching, or redness of the skin
* Abdominal cramps, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
* Increased heart rate
* Rapidly decreasing blood pressure (and accompanying paleness)
* A sudden feeling of weakness
* Anxiety or an overwhelming sense of doom
* Collapse
* Loss of consciousness

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