Advertisement

What are the dangers of allergic reactions?

There are several types of allergic reactions, ranging from mild itching of skin to gastrointestinal symptoms and life-threatening anaphylactic reaction. Early identification of anaphylaxis, such as problems involving the airway or with breathing, is crucial for early intervention. Use of an epipen or even intubation as appropriate may decrease risk of mortality. There are additional risks of missing an allergic reaction. Some serious allergic reactions may present in a bi-modal fashion, or may take over a day to present symptoms. If an allergic reaction is suspected it is wise to visit to the emergency room for observation and intervention as needed. 
Lawrence T. Chiaramonte, MD
Allergy & Immunology
The most dangerous allergic response is chronic inflammation, which can damage tissue cumulatively wherever it occurs. The antibodies attack the intruder and in the process draw other tissues -- cells and fluids -- to the afflicted area. This is what makes an infected cut swell and turn red, makes the nose run during pollen season, or makes an asthmatic wheeze. Acute symptoms subside in time, but there are both short- and long-term dangers.

The danger depends on the level of inflammation. All that attraction of fluids and other substances can kill during an asthma attack or anaphylactic shock, but short of that, they can also damage the affected tissues, rendering them less capable of performing their normal functions.
Asthma Allergies Children: A Parent's Guide

More About this Book

Asthma Allergies Children: A Parent's Guide

Asthma and allergies are at epidemic proportions. It doesn't have to be that way. Two experienced pediatric allergists tell everything a conscientious parent needs to know about these conditions,...

Continue Learning about Allergies

Getting to Know Your Nose
Getting to Know Your Nose
Ever hear that expression, "The answer is as plain as the nose on your face?" Well, when it comes to your nose, you may have more questions than answe...
Read More
What can make allergies worse?
Bryce B. WyldeBryce B. Wylde
Here are 5 things that can aggravate your suffering from allergies. 1) Immunity: Imbalanced immun...
More Answers
5 Surprising Allergy Triggers
5 Surprising Allergy Triggers5 Surprising Allergy Triggers5 Surprising Allergy Triggers5 Surprising Allergy Triggers
Watch out for these unexpected causes of allergy flare-ups.
Start Slideshow
Fight Allergies With Butterbur
Fight Allergies With Butterbur

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.