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How do you treat anaphylaxis?

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Anaphylaxis is a severe allergic reaction that can be deadly. Epinephrine is the most effective treatment, and you need a shot right away. If you’ve had an anaphylaxis reaction before, always carry at least two doses of epinephrine with you.

Epinephrine expires after about a year. If you have an anaphylactic reaction and the pen has expired, take the shot anyway. Emergency medical workers may give you more epinephrine. If you’re not able to breathe, they may put a tube down your mouth or nose to help. If this doesn’t work, they might do a kind of surgery called a tracheostomy that puts the tube directly into your windpipe.

You also may need fluids and medications to help you breathe. If the symptoms don't go away, doctors may also give you antihistamines and steroids.

From: Allergies and Anaphylaxis WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology: "Anaphylaxis."

American Academy of Pediatrics: "Anaphylaxis."

American College of Asthma, Allergy & Immunology: "Anaphylaxis."

Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America: "Anaphylaxis: A Severe Allergic Reaction."

Cleveland Clinic: "Anaphylaxis."

Food Allergy Research & Education: "About Anaphylaxis."

World Allergy Organization: "Anaphylaxis: Synopsis."

Reviewed by Carol DerSarkissian on June 18, 2018

SOURCES:

American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology: "Anaphylaxis."

American Academy of Pediatrics: "Anaphylaxis."

American College of Asthma, Allergy & Immunology: "Anaphylaxis."

Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America: "Anaphylaxis: A Severe Allergic Reaction."

Cleveland Clinic: "Anaphylaxis."

Food Allergy Research & Education: "About Anaphylaxis."

World Allergy Organization: "Anaphylaxis: Synopsis."

Reviewed by Carol DerSarkissian on June 18, 2018

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THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

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