Q:

What is the accepted treatment for a reaction due to a shellfish allergy?

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Quick Answer

The accepted treatment for a reaction due to a shellfish allergy is to take corticosteroids and antihistamines to control the symptoms, reports the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. In severe cases, patients should use prescription epinephrine to reverse the symptoms of anaphylaxis.

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Full Answer

Consuming shellfish may cause a severe allergic reaction known as anaphylaxis, according to the Food Allergy Research and Education. Patients with a shellfish allergy must always carry an epinephrine autoinjector. Patients are advised to have two doses of epinephrine, as anaphylaxis may recur, notes the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology.

Individuals who have a severe allergy to shellfish should inject themselves with their EpiPen as soon as they suspect an allergic reaction, states the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. Symptoms of anaphylaxis include shortness of breath, tightness in the throat and a weak pulse. If the patient is uncertain, he should still use the epinephrine, as the benefits of this injection outweigh the risks.

After a severe shellfish allergic reaction, the patient needs to go to the hospital for observation and further treatment, notes the American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology.

Patients with a shellfish allergy react to tropomyosin, which is a protein found in shellfish, reports Healthline. Antibodies trigger the release of histamines to attack the tropomyosin.

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