Allergic Reaction to Antibiotics

Healthinfi

Of all the drugs, namely antibiotics are often capable of causing allergic reaction. It should be noted that allergic reaction to antibiotics is very common among patients of any age group.

According to scientists, allergic reaction to antibiotics may develop due to the following factors:

  • age and sex of the patient
  • constitutional peculiarities
  • genetic predisposition
  • presence of preexisting allergic reactions
  • frequent repeated courses of the same drug
  • prolonged parenteral administration of antibiotics in high doses

It is believed that the risk of allergic reaction to antibiotics is several times higher in children, whose parents suffer from allergy to drugs. Generally, allergies in children and elder are milder than in adults.

Allergies in infants are frequently characterized by such symptoms, as skin rash, diarrhea, fever and abdominal discomfort. Many parents do not know what to do, when they notice that their child has these symptoms.

The first thing to do in an allergic reaction to antibiotics in children is to stop taking the drug. When symptoms are clearly pronounced, the baby may be given antihistamines or enterosorbents. Then parents should contact a medical institution, where the child will receive quality care.

It should be noted that the allergic reaction to antibiotics in adults, and especially in pregnant women, can occur with serious complications. The symptoms of allergies manifest usually within the first 24 hours in the form of itching, Quincke’s oedema, hypotension, arrhythmia, rash, muscle pain.

In such symptoms, patient should stop using the antibiotic, take an antihistamine and seek medical advice. Treatment duration of allergic reaction to antibiotics will depend on the severity of allergy symptoms.

Mild forms of skin rash can be treated with antihistamines or corticosteroid ointments in combination with sedatives. Patients are recommended to use inhalers for controlling such symptoms, as cough, shortness of breath and wheezing.

Three types of allergic reactions to antibiotics are distinguished by the time of their development:

  • immediate (manifested within 1 hour)
  • accelerated (manifested within 72 hours)
  • late-onset (manifesting after 7 days, and even after 10 days)

It must be said that sometimes allergic reaction to antibiotics can last for a long time and its treatment requires some time. As a rule, the duration of treatment depends on the genetic characteristics of the patient and the dose of the antibiotic administered.

Allergic reaction to antibiotics may be unpredictable. Therefore, they should be used with caution. Fortunately, today you can find an appropriate replacement for any antibiotic, to which the patient has an allergic reaction. And then the treatment with antibiotic will be effective and safe.

If you are allergic to antibiotics, you get signs and symptoms like a rash, swelling of the face or difficulty breathing.

A severe allergic reaction is known as anaphylaxis, and usually occurs within an hour of taking an antibiotic. A severe allergic reaction is a medical emergency requiring immediate medical attention. You may need to call triple zero (000) and perform first aid.

The symptoms of anaphylaxis are:

  • Difficult/noisy breathing
  • Swelling of the tongue
  • Swelling/tightness of the throat
  • Difficulty talking/hoarse voice
  • Wheezing or coughing
  • Dizzinessor collapse
  • Pale and floppy (young children)

Sometimes you can get less dangerous symptoms before an anaphylaxis, such as:

The Australasian Society of Clinical Immunology and Allergy rrecommends that for a severe allergic reaction adrenaline is the initial treatment. If you are allergic to antibiotics you may be instructed by a doctor how to avoid triggers and if severe may instruct you how to use a self administered adrenalin injection such as epipen. The doctor will record the allergy and type of reaction in your notes and electronic health records and will give you an anaphylaxis action plan.

Most allergies are caused by penicillin or antibiotics closely related to penicillin, or by another type of antibiotic called sulfonamides.

Feeling nauseous and vomiting after taking antibiotics is usually a side-effect of the medicine, rather than an allergic reaction.

Your doctor can usually diagnose allergic reactions to antibiotics by talking to you. He or she may refer you to an allergy specialist, who may ask for skin allergy and blood tests.

If you have any other concerns about antibiotics, including possible side effects, contact your doctor.

What is an antibiotic medication allergy?

An antibiotic medication allergy is a harmful reaction to an antibiotic. The reaction can start soon after you take the medicine, or days or weeks after you stop. Healthcare providers cannot know ahead of time if you will have an allergic reaction. Your immune system may become sensitive to the antibiotic the first time you take it. You may have an allergic reaction the next time. The antibiotics most likely to cause an allergic reaction are penicillins and cephalosporins.

What are the signs and symptoms of an allergic reaction to an antibiotic?

  • Mild symptomsinclude red, itchy, flaky, or swollen skin. You may have a flat, red area on your skin that is covered with small bumps. You may also have hives.
  • Severe symptomsinclude skin that blisters or peels, vision problems, and severe swelling or itching. Severe reactions include conditions such as toxic epidermal necrolysis (TEN). Ask your healthcare provider for more information on TEN and other serious conditions.
  • Anaphylaxis symptomsinclude throat tightness, trouble breathing, tingling, dizziness, and wheezing. Anaphylaxis is a sudden, life-threatening reaction that needs immediate treatment. Anaphylaxis may occur if you exercise after exposure to a trigger, such as after you take an antibiotic.

What increases my risk for an antibiotic medication allergy?

  • Other allergies, such as to cats
  • A family history of antibiotic allergies
  • Frequent use of antibiotics
  • A long-term illness that makes your immune system more sensitive

How is an antibiotic medication allergy diagnosed?

Your healthcare provider will ask about your medical history and allergies. You may need additional testing if you developed anaphylaxis after you were exposed to a trigger and then exercised. This is called exercise-induced anaphylaxis. You may also need any of the following:

  • Blood tests:You may need blood taken to give caregivers information about how your body is working. The blood may be taken from your hand, arm, or IV.
  • A patch testmeans a small amount of the antibiotic is put on your skin. The area is covered with a patch that stays on for 2 days. Then your healthcare provider will check your skin for a reaction.
  • A skin prick testmeans a small drop of the antibiotic is put on your forearm and your skin is pricked with a needle. Your healthcare provider will watch for a reaction.
    How is an allergic reaction to an antibiotic treated?
    An intradermal test
    means a small amount of antibiotic liquid is put under the surface of your skin. Your healthcare provider will watch for a reaction.
  • A drug provocation testis also known as an antibiotic challenge test. Your healthcare provider gives you increasing doses of the antibiotic medicine and watches for a reaction.
  • Antihistaminesdecrease mild symptoms such as itching or a rash.
  • Epinephrineis medicine used to treat severe allergic reactions such as anaphylaxis.
  • Steroidsreduce inflammation.
  • Desensitizationmay be done after you have a reaction, if you need to be treated with the antibiotic again. Your healthcare provider will give you small doses of the antibiotic over a few hours. He will treat any allergic reaction that you have. The dose is increased a little at a time until the full dose is reached and the medicine stops causing an allergic reaction. You will have to take a dose of the antibiotic every day to keep your body desensitized.

What steps do I need to take for signs or symptoms of anaphylaxis?

  • Immediatelygive 1 shot of epinephrine only into the outer thigh muscle.
  • Leave the shot in placeas directed. Your healthcare provider may recommend you leave it in place for up to 10 seconds before you remove it. This helps make sure all of the epinephrine is delivered.

What safety precautions do I need to take if I am at risk for anaphylaxis?

  • Keep 2 shots of epinephrine with you at all times.You may need a second shot, because epinephrine only works for about 20 minutes and symptoms may return. Your healthcare provider can show you and family members how to give the shot. Check the expiration date every month and replace it before it expires.
  • Create an action plan.Your healthcare provider can help you create a written plan that explains the allergy and an emergency plan to treat a reaction. The plan explains when to give a second epinephrine shot if symptoms return or do not improve after the first. Give copies of the action plan and emergency instructions to family members, work and school staff, and daycare providers. Show them how to give a shot of epinephrine.
  • Be careful when you exercise.If you have had exercise-induced anaphylaxis, do not exercise right after you eat. Stop exercising right away if you start to develop any signs or symptoms of anaphylaxis. You may first feel tired, warm, or have itchy skin. Hives, swelling, and severe breathing problems may develop if you continue to exercise.
  • Carry medical alert identification.Wear medical alert jewelry or carry a card that says you have an antibiotic medicine allergy. Healthcare providers need to know that they should not give you this antibiotic. Ask your healthcare provider where to get these items.
  • Read medicine labels before you use any medicine.Do not take the medicine if it contains the antibiotic that you are allergic to. This includes topical medicines that you put on your skin. Ask a pharmacist if you are not sure.
  • Tell all healthcare providers about your allergy.Always tell your healthcare providers the names of medicines that you are allergic to and the symptoms of your allergic reactions.
  • Ask if you need to avoid other medicines.You may be allergic to other medicines if you had an allergic reaction to an antibiotic. Make sure you know the names of other medicines that you should not take.

such as trouble breathing, swelling in your mouth or throat, or wheezing. You may also have itching, a rash, hives, or feel like you are going to faint.

When should I seek immediate care?

  • You have a rash with itchy, swollen, red spots.
  • You have blisters, or your skin is peeling.
  • You have trouble swallowing or your voice sounds hoarse.
  • You have a fast or pounding heartbeat.
  • Your skin or the whites of your eyes turn yellow.

When should I contact my healthcare provider?

  • You think you are having an allergic reaction. Contact your healthcare provider before you take another dose of your antibiotic.
  • You have a rash.
  • You have a fever.
  • You have a sore throat or swollen glands. You will feel hard lumps when you touch your throat if your glands are swollen.
  • Your skin itches and becomes red when you are in sunlight.
  • You have questions or concerns about your condition, allergy, or care.

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your caregivers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

Medicines:

  • Epinephrine is used to treat severe allergic reactions such as anaphylaxis.
  • Antihistamines decrease mild symptoms such as itching or a rash.
  • Steroids reduce inflammation.
  • Take your medicine as directed. Contact your healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him of her if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency

Safety precautions to take if you are at risk for anaphylaxis:

  • Keep 2 shots of epinephrine with you at all times. You may need a second shot, because epinephrine only works for about 20 minutes and symptoms may return. Your healthcare provider can show you and family members how to give the shot. Check the expiration date every month and replace it before it expires.
  • Create an action plan. Your healthcare provider can help you create a written plan that explains the allergy and an emergency plan to treat a reaction. The plan explains when to give a second epinephrine shot if symptoms return or do not improve after the first. Give copies of the action plan and emergency instructions to family members, work and school staff, and daycare providers. Show them how to give a shot of epinephrine.
  • Be careful when you exercise. If you have had exercise-induced anaphylaxis, do not exercise right after you eat. Stop exercising right away if you start to develop any signs or symptoms of anaphylaxis. You may first feel tired, warm, or have itchy skin. Hives, swelling, and severe breathing problems may develop if you continue to exercise.
  • Carry medical alert identification. Wear medical alert jewelry or carry a card that says you have an antibiotic medicine allergy. Healthcare providers need to know that they should not give you this antibiotic. Ask your healthcare provider where to get these items.
  • Read medicine labels before you use any medicine. Do not take the medicine if it contains the antibiotic that you are allergic to. This includes topical medicines that you put on your skin. Ask a pharmacist if you are not sure.
  • Tell all healthcare providers about your allergy. Always tell your healthcare providers the names of medicines that you are allergic to and the symptoms of your allergic reactions.
  • Ask if you need to avoid other medicines. You may be allergic to other medicines if you had an allergic reaction to an antibiotic. Make sure you know the names of other medicines that you should not take.

An antibiotic medication allergy

is a harmful reaction to an antibiotic. The reaction can start soon after you take the medicine, or days or weeks after you stop. Healthcare providers cannot know ahead of time if you will have an allergic reaction. Your immune system may become sensitive to the antibiotic the first time you take it. You may have an allergic reaction the next time. The antibiotics most likely to cause an allergic reaction are penicillins and cephalosporins.

Common signs and symptoms:

  • Mild symptoms include red, itchy, flaky, or swollen skin. You may have a flat, red area on your skin that is covered with small bumps. You may also have hives.
  • Severe symptoms include skin that blisters or peels, vision problems, and severe swelling or itching. Severe reactions include conditions such as toxic epidermal necrolysis (TEN). Ask your healthcare provider for more information on TEN and other serious conditions.
  • Anaphylaxis symptoms include throat tightness, trouble breathing, tingling, dizziness, and wheezing. Anaphylaxis is a sudden, life-threatening reaction that needs immediate treatment. Anaphylaxis may occur if you exercise after exposure to a trigger, such as after you take an antibiotic.

Seek care immediately if:

  • You have a rash with itchy, swollen, red spots.
  • You have blisters, or your skin is peeling.
  • You have trouble swallowing or your voice sounds hoarse.
  • You have a fast or pounding heartbeat.
  • Your skin or the whites of your eyes turn yellow.

Contact your healthcare provider if:

  • You think you are having an allergic reaction. Contact your healthcare provider before you take another dose of your antibiotic.
  • You have a rash.
  • You have a fever.
  • You have a sore throat or swollen glands. You will feel hard lumps when you touch your throat if your glands are swollen.
  • Your skin itches and becomes red when you are in sunlight.
  • You have questions or concerns about your condition, allergy, or care.

Steps to take for signs or symptoms of anaphylaxis:

  • Immediately give 1 shot of epinephrine only into the outer thigh muscle.
  • Leave the shot in place as directed. Your healthcare provider may recommend you leave it in place for up to 10 seconds before you remove it. This helps make sure all of the epinephrine is delivered.
  • Call 911 and go to the emergency department, even if the shot improved symptoms. Do not drive yourself. Bring the used epinephrine shot with you.

Treatment

depends on how severe your reaction was and if you had a reaction before. You may need any of the following:

  • Antihistamines decrease mild symptoms such as itching or a rash.
  • Epinephrine is medicine used to treat severe allergic reactions such as anaphylaxis.
  • Steroids reduce inflammation.
  • Desensitization may be done after you have a reaction, if you need to be treated with the antibiotic again. Your healthcare provider will give you small doses of the antibiotic over a few hours. He will treat any allergic reaction that you have. The dose is increased a little at a time until the full dose is reached and the medicine stops causing an allergic reaction. You will have to take a dose of the antibiotic every day to keep your body desensitized.

Safety precautions to take if you are at risk for anaphylaxis:

  • Keep 2 shots of epinephrine with you at all times. You may need a second shot, because epinephrine only works for about 20 minutes and symptoms may return. Your healthcare provider can show you and family members how to give the shot. Check the expiration date every month and replace it before it expires.
  • Create an action plan. Your healthcare provider can help you create a written plan that explains the allergy and an emergency plan to treat a reaction. The plan explains when to give a second epinephrine shot if symptoms return or do not improve after the first. Give copies of the action plan and emergency instructions to family members, work and school staff, and daycare providers. Show them how to give a shot of epinephrine.
  • Be careful when you exercise. If you have had exercise-induced anaphylaxis, do not exercise right after you eat. Stop exercising right away if you start to develop any signs or symptoms of anaphylaxis. You may first feel tired, warm, or have itchy skin. Hives, swelling, and severe breathing problems may develop if you continue to exercise.
  • Carry medical alert identification. Wear medical alert jewelry or carry a card that says you have an antibiotic medicine allergy. Healthcare providers need to know that they should not give you this antibiotic. Ask your healthcare provider where to get these items.
  • Read medicine labels before you use any medicine. Do not take the medicine if it contains the antibiotic that you are allergic to. This includes topical medicines that you put on your skin. Ask a pharmacist if you are not sure.
  • Tell all healthcare providers about your allergy. Always tell your healthcare providers the names of medicines that you are allergic to and the symptoms of your allergic reactions.
  • Ask if you need to avoid other medicines. You may be allergic to other medicines if you had an allergic reaction to an antibiotic. Make sure you know the names of other medicines that you should not take.

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  • Good Article, i like this information for Antibiotics
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