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Identification, Causes & Treatment

Some types of allergies, including allergies to foods and insect stings, can trigger a severe reaction known as anaphylaxis. A life-threatening medical emergency, anaphylaxis can cause you to go into shock.


Signs and symptoms of anaphylaxis include:

  • Loss of consciousness

  • A drop in blood pressure

  • Severe shortness of breath

  • Swelling of the face, eyes or tongue

  • Skin rash

  • Light-headedness or dizziness

  • A rapid, weak pulse

  • Nausea and vomiting

  • Adnominal pain

  • Chest discomfort

  • Difficulty swallowing

  • Palpitations

  • Slurred speech

  • Abnormal breathing sound or wheezing


Typical food triggers: Peanuts, Shellfish, Fish, Milk, Eggs, Soy and Wheat.

Medication: Penicillin, Painkillers, Anaesthetics

Insect bites: Bee stings, Wasps, Jellyfish If a wasp or bee stings you don’t try to remove the sting with your fingers, as this will force more poison into the flesh. Use a blunt, flat object like a plastic ruler, credit card or butter knife to scrape over the area.

  • Immediately call HEMS 082 695 1240. If you /the patient carries a Epipen give yourself/the patient a shot right away.

  • Lie the patient down. If there is vomiting or bleeding from the mouth, turn the patient on his/her side. Do not give anything to eat or drink. If there are no signs of breathing, start CPR.

  • Get emergency treatment even if the symptoms start to improve.

What To Do
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