Food & Drug Allergy
Food allergy is an immune system reaction that occurs soon after eating a certain food. Even a tiny amount of the allergy-causing food can trigger signs and symptoms such as digestive problems, hives or swollen airways. In some people, a food allergy can cause severe symptoms or even a life-threatening reaction known as anaphylaxis.
Food allergy affects an estimated 6 to 8 percent of children under age 3 and up to 3 percent of adults. While there’s no cure, some children outgrow their food allergy as they get older.
While there’s ongoing research to find better treatments to reduce food allergy symptoms and prevent allergy attacks, there isn’t any proven treatment that can prevent or completely relieve symptoms. Treatments being studied include oral immunotherapy and early exposure.
It’s easy to confuse a food allergy with a much more common reaction known as food intolerance. While bothersome, food intolerance is a less serious condition that does not involve the immune system.
A drug allergy is the abnormal reaction of your immune system to a medication. Any medication over the counter, prescription or herbal can induce a drug allergy. However, a drug allergy is more likely with certain medications.
The most common signs and symptoms of drug allergy are hives, rash, or fever. A drug allergy may cause serious reactions, including a life-threatening condition that affects multiple body systems (anaphylaxis).
A drug allergy is not the same as a drug side effect, a known possible reaction listed on a drug label. A drug allergy is also different from drug toxicity caused by an overdose of medication.
Latex allergy is a reaction to certain proteins found in natural rubber latex; a product made from the rubber tree. If you have a latex allergy, your body mistakes latex for a harmful substance.
Latex allergy may cause itchy skin and hives or even anaphylaxis, a potentially life-threatening condition that can cause throat swelling and severe difficulty breathing. Evaluation can determine if you have a latex allergy or if you’re at risk of developing a latex allergy.
Understanding latex allergy and knowing common sources of latex can help you prevent allergic reactions.
Penicillin allergy is an abnormal reaction of your immune system to the antibiotic drug penicillin. Penicillin is prescribed for treating various bacterial infections.
Common signs and symptoms of penicillin allergy include hives, rash and itching. Severe reactions include anaphylaxis, a life-threatening condition that affects multiple body systems
Research has shown that penicillin allergies may be over-reported a problem that can result in the use of less-appropriate and more-expensive antibiotic treatments. Therefore, an accurate diagnosis is needed when penicillin allergy is suspected to ensure the best treatment options in the future.
Other antibiotics, particularly those with chemical properties like penicillin, also can result in allergic reactions.