Catherine Fuller, MD
Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology Specialist located in West Los Angeles, CA
Up to 200,000 people experience an anaphylaxis response to allergens each year. Severe allergies can result in a life-threatening condition requiring immediate medical attention. Catherine Fuller, MD, and her compassionate team in the Brentwood area of Los Angeles provides comprehensive allergy testing to determine your allergy triggers and allergens. If you suspect an allergy, don’t wait to find out if you are at risk of anaphylaxis. Call the office or schedule an appointment online today.
Anaphylaxis Q & A
What is anaphylaxis?
Anaphylaxis is a life-threatening allergic reaction that causes your immune system to release chemicals in response to an allergen. The chemicals can put your body into shock, making it difficult to breathe. Common triggers include foods, such as nuts, shellfish, milk, medications, bee stings, insect venom, and latex.
Anaphylaxis needs treatment with epinephrine injections and a trip to the emergency room as symptoms can reoccur minutes or even hours after they subside. Do not wait to see if the symptoms go away — go to the emergency room immediately. Anaphylaxis can be fatal.
What are the symptoms of anaphylaxis?
Most of the time, symptoms of anaphylaxis occur within minutes of contact with your allergen, but sometimes they may not occur for half an hour or more. Anaphylaxis symptoms include:
- Weak, rapid pulse
- Low blood pressure
- Difficulty breathing
- Nausea or vomiting
What are the risk factors for anaphylaxis?
Because your allergies can change over the course of your life, it’s difficult to pinpoint risk factors for anaphylaxis. You can become allergic to something that you’ve never been allergic to in the past, or you can stop having an allergy to something that always triggered an allergic reaction. People who have multiple allergies tend to be more at risk for anaphylaxis, as well as those with:
- Previous anaphylaxis episodes
- Mastocytosis (abnormal accumulation of white blood cells)
How can I prevent anaphylaxis?
Knowing your allergens and learning to avoid them is the best way to prevent anaphylaxis, but it’s not always possible. If you have severe allergies, keep epinephrine autoinjectors available to stop anaphylaxis responses before they become life-threatening. You can also do the following to help prevent anaphylaxis:
- Tell doctors about medical and food allergies
- Avoid stinging insects, wear shoes and long-sleeved shirts and pants
- Carefully read food labels
- Ask restaurants how food is prepared
- Do not hesitate to use you epinephrine autoinjector
- Calle 911 and be prepared for a late phase reaction
Get the support you need at Dr. Catherine Fuller’s practice. Your allergies can be reduced, eliminated, or controlled with her care. Give the office a call or use the online booking tool to schedule an appointment to learn about your allergens and how to prevent anaphylaxis.