Anaphylaxis and food allergies

Early symptoms may be mild but can quickly lead to more serious problems


Anaphylaxis symptoms occur suddenly and can progress quickly. Usually there is a trigger such as medication, food, or an insect bite. The early symptoms may be mild, such as an itchy throat, itchy skin rash or a 'strange feeling.'

However, these symptoms can quickly lead to more serious problems, including:

  • Trouble breathing
  • Collapse, dizziness, rapid heart rate, pallor (indicators of low blood pressure)
  • Tightness of the throat
  • Swelling of the throat
  • Hoarse voice
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal pain
  • Diarrhoea
  • Feeling of doom
  • Cardiac arrest

Call 000 immediately should the above symptoms occur.

If you carry an Epipen or Anapen, administer this immediately but still call for help (000).

You will need to be taken to an Emergency Department for further treatment and observation. Referral to an allergist usually occurs to attempt to identify trigger(s) and educate on the use of an Epipen or Anapen.

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