Anaphylactic shock: Pathophysiology, recognition, and treatment

  • Johnson R
  • Peebles R
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Abstract

Anaphylaxis is a systemic, type I hypersensitivity reaction that often has fatal consequences. Anaphylaxis has a variety of causes including foods, latex, drugs, and hymenoptera venom. Epinephrine given early is the most important intervention. Adjunctive treatments include fluid therapy, H (1) and H (2) histamine receptor antagonists, corticosteroids, and bronchodilators; however these do not substitute for epinephrine. Patients with a history of anaphylaxis should be educated about their condition, especially with respect to trigger avoidance and in the correct use of epinephrine autoinjector kits. Such kits should be available to the sensitized patient at all times.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Allergy
  • Anaphylaxis
  • Epinephrine
  • Shock

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