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What is anaphylaxis

Anaphylaxis is a severe and possibly fatal form of an allergic reaction. The most common allergic triggers of anaphylaxis are foods, insect stings, and medications. Anaphylaxis usually occurs within 5 to 30 mins after exposure to the allergen, but some reactions can take several hours. In some individuals, these allergens can induce the release of mediators of inflammation from mast cells into systemic circulation leading to increase in blood vessel permeability, dilation of blood vessels, and contraction of smooth muscles which results in anaphylaxis.

Symptoms of Anaphylaxis:

Kids will often have their own description of anaphylactic. For instance, they may mention that their tongue feels fuzzy or throat feels funny. They may even stay quiet as they do not understand what is happening.

The most common cause of death with anaphylaxis is due to the compromise of the cardiovascular and respiratory systems.

Lessons from Anaphylaxis Fatalities

Remember FAST




Total Body:



Quickly treat with an epinephrine auto injector.

  1. Give epinephrine at first signs of anaphylaxis.
  2. Call 911 and inform them that you or someone is having an anaphylactic reaction.
  3. Give the second dose of epinephrine as early as 5 mins after the first dose if no improvement in symptoms.
  4. Go to nearest hospital immediately for treatment even if symptoms have stopped.

Do not hesitate or treat with solely with antihistamines or corticosteroids as symptoms can worsen quickly and without warning. Antihistamines and corticosteroids can be used with, but cannot substitute for epinephrine.

Anaphylaxis Emergency Plan

An anaphylaxis emergency plan important form indicating how to recognize and treat an anaphylactic reaction, personal information on the at-risk individual, and identified allergies. It is crucial to share your or your child’s anaphylaxis emergency plan with the school, work, camps.

Hamiltonn Allergy Anaphylaxis Emergency Plan PDF