Anaphylactic shock: Definition
Anaphylactic shock is an extremely violent allergic reaction to an allergen (foreign substance in the body). These are rare events (and sometimes fatal if the person is not an appropriate treatment quickly. The penetration of the allergen in the body occurs primarily via the respiratory tract, gastrointestinal, intravenous, but also by insect bite or casual contact.
The allergic reaction can cause circulatory failure, a fall in blood pressure, increased heart rate, respiratory and digestive endangering vital organs.
Anaphylactic shock: causes
In a first contact with an allergen (foreign substance to the body), IgE antibodies secreted by plasma cells (immune cells that produce antibodies) bind to mast cells or basophils (both bloodwhite). Often the first contact that does not cause clinical symptoms. But the successive re-introduction of this allergen may ultimately lead to a very strong allergic reaction: anaphylactic shock. Anaphylactic shock may also occur at the first contact with a substance.
Among the substances most frequently implicated include: anesthetic agents (curare, local anesthetics ...), insect stings (bees ...), certain foods (fish, seafood, nuts, eggs, peanuts, strawberries , bananas, avocados, kiwis, lentils, soy ...), drugs (aspirin, penicillin ...), milk, latex, iodine products used in radiology.
Anaphylactic shock: symptoms
The three signs of anaphylaxis are hives (itchy red patches on the body and change), respiratory (laryngeal edema, wheezing, or rales, shortness of breath with rapid breathing, which ends blue, and in severe cases, respiratory arrest) and the fall in blood pressure that causes increased heart rate (malaise fast, very low blood pressure or cardiac arrest). There is also abdominal pain with diarrhea and vomiting.
The time of onset is variable, from minutes to hours after contact with the allergen. They depend on the amount absorbed, the nature of the substance and the pathway (absorption for medicines or food, insect stings ...).
Anaphylactic shock: prevention
The identification of the allergen is essential to avoid contact.When one knows allergic, it is important to always carry a pen self-injectable epinephrine, prescribed by a doctor and a list in his wallet indicating if you feel unwell allergens.
Feel free to refuse food to which you know to read sensitive and the composition of a product before consuming it.
Anaphylactic shock: review
After treating the patient in the emergency, the procedure when possible, to skin tests and blood samples immediately after the reaction.
It is advisable, as a second step, an allergy consultation to identify the allergen.
Anaphylactic shock is a medical emergency. Samu (15 or 112 on a laptop) should be called as soon as possible. You must immediately stop the administration of the allergen. In case of collapse (fall in blood) is administered adrenaline. This is the emergency treatment of anaphylactic shock. Respiratory arrest may require a 'word of mouth', and circulatory arrest, cardiac massage, pending the arrival of EMS. Pure oxygen through a face mask or after endotracheal intubation is recommended if the person suffocates.
Anaphylactic shock: evolution
The evolution is usually favorable if treatment is quick and responsive. If the shock is prolonged and treatment is not administered promptly, complications such as coma, respiratory distress syndrome, heart failure ... until death, can occur.
Episodes of relapse are possible during the first 24 hours after the anaphylactic shock. Thus, monitoring is in place.
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