The body’s immune system is a marvelous apparatus which protects us from an incredible number of substances in the environment that could harm us. When the immune system breaks down, or is in a weakened state, the body is subject to great harm from common and usually relatively harmless illnesses. The common cold or the flu can be lethal to someone with a non-functional immune system.
Allergic reactions, however, are the immune system ‘over-functioning.’ Substances which are harmless to most people, like pollen, animal hairs, or bee stings, cause the immune system to react in such a way that can create a physiological response which can be anything from the discomfort of a runny nose to a life-threatening situation like anaphylaxis.
As an emergency room physician, Dr. Josyann Abisaab believes people should be aware of the signs of anaphylaxis so that if they should ever be confronted with such a reaction, they will know how to respond.
Shock is one of the signs of anaphylaxis. Shock is when there is a sudden and large fall in the body’s blood pressure creating a situation where the organs do not receive the blood supply they need to function properly. Considering the serious danger this can put someone in, the best response is to immediately call an ambulance so the person having the reaction can get the care he needs as soon as possible.
Patients with severe allergies are advised to carry an Epi-Pen with them at all times. A doctor’s prescription is needed for an Epi-Pen, which can provide a life-saving injection for those with severe allergies.