What is the most common type of latex allergy
In the early stages of allergy, a type I hypersensitivity reaction against an allergen encountered for the first time and presented by a professional antigen-presenting cell causes a response in a type of immune cell called a TH2 lymphocyte; a subset of T cells that produce a cytokine called interleukin-4 (IL-4). These TH2 cells interact with other lymphocytes called B cells, whose role is production of antibodies. Coupled with signals provided by IL-4, this interaction stimulates the B cell to start production of a large quantity of a specific type of antibody known as IgE.
Secreted IgE circulates in the blood and binds to an IgE-specific receptor (a helpful of Fc receptor called FcεRI) on the surface of other kinds of immune cells called mast cells and basophils, which are both involved in the acute inflammatory response. The IgE-coated cells, at this stage, are sensitized to the allergen.
If later exposure to the same allergen occurs, the allergen can bind to the IgE molecules held on the surface of the mast cells or basophils. Cross-linking of the IgE and Fc receptors occurs when more than one IgE-receptor complicated interacts with the same allergenic molecule, and activates the sensitized cell.
Activated mast cells and basophils undergo a process called degranulation, during which they release histamine and other inflammatory chemical mediators (cytokines, interleukins, leukotrienes, and prostaglandins) from their granules into the surrounding tissue causing several systemic effects, such as vasodilation, mucous secretion, nerve stimulation, and smooth muscle contraction. This results in rhinorrhea, itchiness, dyspnea, and anaphylaxis. Depending on the individual, allergen, and mode of introduction, the symptoms can be system-wide (classical anaphylaxis), or localized to specific body systems; asthma is localized to the respiratory system and eczema is localized to the dermis.
After the chemical mediators of the acute response subside, late-phase responses can often happen.
This is due to the migration of other leukocytes such as neutrophils, lymphocytes, eosinophils and macrophages to the initial site. The reaction is generally seen 2–24 hours after the original reaction. Cytokines from mast cells may frolic a role in the persistence of long-term effects. Late-phase responses seen in asthma are slightly diverse from those seen in other allergic responses, although they are still caused by release of mediators from eosinophils and are still dependent on activity of TH2 cells.
Allergic contact dermatitis
Although allergic contact dermatitis is termed an «allergic» reaction (which generally refers to type I hypersensitivity), its pathophysiology actually involves a reaction that more correctly corresponds to a type IV hypersensitivity reaction. In type IV hypersensitivity, there is activation of certain types of T cells (CD8+) that destroy target cells on contact, as well as activated macrophages that produce hydrolyticenzymes.
Main article: Food allergy
|Balsam of Peru||Redness, swelling, itching, allergiccontact dermatitis reactions, stomatitis (inflammation and soreness of the mouth or tongue), cheilitis (inflammation, rash, or painful erosion of the lips, oropharyngealmucosa, or angles of their mouth), pruritus, hand eczema, generalized or resistant plantardermatitis, rhinitis, conjunctivitis, and blisters.||Present in numerous foods, such as coffee, flavored tea, wine, beer, gin, liqueurs, apéritifs (e.g.
vermouth, bitters), soft drinks including cola, juice, citrus, citrus fruit peel, marmalade, tomatoes and tomato-containing products, Mexican and Italian foods with red sauces, ketchup, spices (e.g. cloves, Jamaica pepper (allspice), cinnamon, nutmeg, paprika, curry, anise, and ginger), chili sauce, barbecue sauce, chutney, pickles, pickled vegetables, chocolate, vanilla, baked goods and pastries, pudding, ice cream, chewing gum, and candy.
|Egg||Anaphylaxis, swelling, sometimes flatulence and vomiting||An allergic individual may not own any reaction to consuming food only prepared with yolk and not glair, or vice versa.|
|Fish||Respiratory reactions, Anaphylaxis, oral allergy syndrome, sometimes vomiting||One of three allergies to seafood, not to be conflated with allergies to crustaceans and mollusks. Fish allergy sufferers own a 50% likelihood of being cross reactive with another fish species, but some individuals are only allergic to one species, such as; tilapia, salmon,  or cod.
A proper diagnosis is considered complicated due to these cross reactivity between fish species and other seafood allergies.  Hazard extends to exposure to cooking vapors or handling.
|Fruit||Mild itching, rash, generalized urticaria, oral allergy syndrome, abdominal pain, vomiting, anaphylaxis||Mango, strawberries, banana, avocado, and kiwi are common problems. Severe allergies to tomatoes own also been reported. |
|Garlic||Dermatitis, asymmetrical pattern of fissure, thickening/shedding of the outer skin layers,anaphylaxis|
|Hot peppers||Skin rash, hives, throat tightness, tongue swelling, possible vomiting|
|Oats||Dermatitis, respiratory problems, anaphylaxis|
|Maize||Hives, pallor, confusion, dizziness, stomach pain, swelling, vomiting, indigestion, diarrhea, cough, tightness in throat, wheezing, shortness of breath, anaphylaxis||Often a hard allergy to manage due to the various food products which contain various forms of corn.|
|Milk||Skin rash, hives, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation, stomach pain, flatulence, nasal congestion, dermatitis, blisters, anaphylaxis||Not to be confused with lactose intolerance.|
|Peanut||Anaphylaxis and swelling, sometimes vomiting||Includes some cold-pressed peanut oils. Distinct from tree nut allergy, as peanuts are legumes.|
|Poultry Meat||Hives, swelling of, or under the dermis, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, severe oral allergy syndrome, shortness of breath, rarely anaphylactic shock||Very rare allergies to chicken, turkey, squab, and sometimes more mildly to other avian meats.
Not to be confused with secondary reactions of bird-egg syndrome. The genuine allergy has no causal relationship with egg allergy, nor is there any shut association with red meat allergy. Prevalence still unknown as of 2016.
|Red Meat||Hives, swelling, dermatitis, stomach pain, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, fainting, shortness of breath,, rarely anaphylaxis||Allergies to the sugar carbohydrate found in beef, venison, lamb, and pork called alpha-gal.
It is brought on by tick bites. Allergic reaction to pork is an exception, as it may also be caused by pork-cat syndrome instead of alpha-gal allergy.
|Rice||Sneezing, runny nose, itching, stomachache, eczema.||People with a rice allergy can be affected by eating rice or breathing in rice steam.|
|Sesame||Possible respiratory, skin, and gastrointestinal reactions which can trigger serious systemic anaphylactic responses.||By law, foods containing sesame must be labeled so in European Union, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.|
|Shellfish||Respiratory symptoms, Anaphylaxis, oral allergy syndrome, gastrointestinal symptoms, rhinitis, conjunctivitis||Shellfish allergies are highly cross reactive, but its prevalence is generally higher than that of fish allergy.
As of 2018 six allergens own been identified to prawn alone; along with crab it‘s the major culprit of seafood anaphylaxis. In reference to it as one of the “Big 8”  or “major 14” allergens it is sometimes specified as a “crustacean shellfish” allergy, or more simply, a “crustacean allergy”. Sometimes it is conflated with an allergy to molluscan shellfish but finish tolerance to one but not the other isn’t unusual. Most generally, a mono-sensitive individual will experience a crustacean allergy alone with tolerance to mollusks, rather than vice versa.
|Soy||Anaphylaxis, sometimes vomiting|
|Sulfites||Hives, rash, redness of skin, headache (particular frontal), burning behind eyes, breathing difficulties (anaphylaxis)||Used as a preserving agent in numerous diverse foods, such as raisins, dried peaches, various other dried fruit, canned or frozen fruits and vegetables, wines, vinegars and processed meats.|
|Tartrazine||Skin irritation, hives, rash||Synthetic yellow food coloring, also used for bright green coloring|
|Tree nut||Anaphylaxis, swelling, rash, hives, sometimes vomiting||Hazard extends to exposure to cooking vapors, or handling. Distinct from peanut allergy, as peanuts are legumes.|
|Wheat||Eczema (atopic dermatitis), Hives, asthma, hay fever, angioedema, abdominal cramps, Celiac disease, diarrhea, temporary (3 or 4 day) mental incompetence, anemia, nausea, and vomiting||Not to be confused with Celiac Disease or NCGS (Non Celiac Gluten Sensitivity).
While wheat allergies are «true» allergies, Celiac Disease is an autoimmune disease.
Main article: Drug allergy
|Balsam of Peru||Redness, swelling, itching, allergiccontact dermatitis reactions, stomatitis (inflammation and soreness of the mouth or tongue), cheilitis (inflammation, rash, or painful erosion of the lips, oropharyngealmucosa, or angles of their mouth), pruritus, hand eczema, generalized or resistant plantardermatitis, rhinitis, conjunctivitis, and blisters.||Present in numerous drugs, such as hemorrhoid suppositories and ointment (e.g.
Anusol), cough medicine/suppressant and lozenges, diaper rash ointments, oral and lip ointments, tincture of benzoin, wound spray (it has been reported to inhibit Mycobacterium tuberculosis as well as the common ulcer-causing bacteria H. pylori in test-tube studies), calamine lotion, surgical dressings, dental cement, eugenol used by dentists, some periodontal impression materials, and in the treatment of dry socket in dentistry.
|Tetracycline||Many, including: severe headache, dizziness, blurred vision, fever, chills, body aches, flu symptoms, severe blistering, peeling, dark colored urine|
|Dilantin||Many, including: swollen glands, simple bruising or bleeding, fever, sore throat|
|Tegretol (carbamazepine)||Shortness of breath, wheezing or difficulty breathing, swelling of the face, lips, tongue etc., hives|
|Penicillin||Diarrhea, hypersensitivity, nausea, rash, neurotoxicity, urticaria|
|Cephalosporins||Maculopapular or morbilliform skin eruption, and less commonly urticaria, eosinophilia, serum-sickness–like reactions, and anaphylaxis.|
|Sulfonamides||Urinary tract disorders, haemopoietic disorders, porphyria and hypersensitivity reactions, Stevens–Johnson syndrometoxic epidermal necrolysis|
|Non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (cromolyn sodium, nedocromil sodium, etc.)||Many, including: swollen eyes, lips, or tongue, difficulty swallowing, shortness of breath, rapid heart rate|
|Intravenous contrast dye||Anaphylactoid reactions and contrast-induced nephropathy|
|Local anesthetics||Urticaria and rash, dyspnea, wheezing, flushing, cyanosis, tachycardia|
Main article: Allergy § Other environmental factors
|Balsam of Peru||Redness, swelling, itching, allergiccontact dermatitis reactions, stomatitis (inflammation and soreness of the mouth or tongue), cheilitis (inflammation, rash, or painful erosion of the lips, oropharyngealmucosa, or angles of their mouth), pruritus, hand eczema, generalized or resistant plantardermatitis, rhinitis, conjunctivitis, and blisters.||A number of national and international surveys own identified Balsam of Peru as being in the «top five» allergens most commonly causing patch test reactions in people referred to dermatology clinics.|
|Pollen||Sneezing, body ache, headache (in rare cases, extremely painful cluster headaches may happen due to allergic sinusitis; these may leave a temporary time period of 1 and a half to 2 days with eye sensitivity), allergic conjunctivitis (includes watery, red, swelled, itchy, and irritating eyes), runny nose, irritation of the nose, nasal congestion, minor fatigue, chest pain and discomfort, coughing, sore throat, facial discomfort (feeling of stuffed face) due to allergic sinusitis, possible asthma attack, wheezing|
|Cat||Sneezing, itchy swollen eyes, rash, congestion, wheezing|
|Dog||Rash, sneezing, congestion, wheezing, vomiting from coughing, Sometimes itchy welts.||Caused by dander, saliva or urine of dogs, or by dust, pollen or other allergens that own been carried on the fur. Allergy to dogs is present in as much as 10 percent of the population.|
|Insect sting||Hives, wheezing, possible anaphylaxis||Possible from bee or wasp stings, or bites from mosquitoes or flies love Leptoconops torrens.|
|Mold||Sneeze, coughing, itchy, discharge from the nose, respiratory irritation, congested feeling, joint aches, headaches, fatigue|
|Perfume||Itchy eyes, runny nose, sore throat, headaches, muscle/joint pain, asthma attack, wheezing, chest pain, blisters|
|Cosmetics||Contact dermatitis, irritant contact dermatitis, inflammation, redness, conjunctivitis ,sneezing|
|Semen||Burning, pain and swelling, possibly for days, swelling or blisters, vaginal redness, fever, runny nose, extreme fatigue||In a case study in Switzerland, a lady who was allergic to Balsam of Peru was allergic to her boyfriend’s semen following intercourse, after he drank large amounts of Coca-Cola.|
|Latex||Contact dermatitis, hypersensitivity|
|Water (see note)||Epidermal itching||Strictly aquagenic pruritus or aquagenic urticaria, but freezing urticaria may also be described as a «water allergy,» in which water may cause hives and anaphylaxis|
|House dust mite||Asthma||Home allergen reduction may be recommended|
|Nickel (nickel sulfate hexahydrate)||Allergic contact dermatitis, dyshidrotic eczema|
|Gold (gold sodium thiosulfate)||Allergic contact dermatitis|
|Chromium||Allergic contact dermatitis|
|Cobalt chloride||Allergic contact dermatitis|
|Formaldehyde||Allergic contact dermatitis|
|Photographic developers||Allergic contact dermatitis|
|Fungicide||Allergic contact dermatitis, fever, anaphylaxis|
Many substances can cause an allergic reaction when in contact with the human integumentary system.
Signs and symptoms
|Affected organ||Common signs and symptoms|
|Nose||Swelling of the nasal mucosa (allergic rhinitis) runny nose, sneezing|
|Eyes||Redness and itching of the conjunctiva (allergic conjunctivitis, watery)|
|Airways||Sneezing, coughing, bronchoconstriction, wheezing and dyspnea, sometimes outright attacks of asthma, in severe cases the airway constricts due to swelling known as laryngeal edema|
|Ears||Feeling of fullness, possibly pain, and impaired hearing due to the lack of eustachian tube drainage.|
|Skin||Rashes, such as eczema and hives (urticaria)|
|Gastrointestinal tract||Abdominal pain, bloating, vomiting, diarrhea|
Many allergens such as dust or pollen are airborne particles. In these cases, symptoms arise in areas in contact with air, such as eyes, nose, and lungs. For instance, allergic rhinitis, also known as hay fever, causes irritation of the nose, sneezing, itching, and redness of the eyes. Inhaled allergens can also lead to increased production of mucus in the lungs, shortness of breath, coughing, and wheezing.
Aside from these ambient allergens, allergic reactions can result from foods, insect stings, and reactions to medications love aspirin and antibiotics such as penicillin.
Symptoms of food allergy include abdominal pain, bloating, vomiting, diarrhea, itchy skin, and swelling of the skin during hives. Food allergies rarely cause respiratory (asthmatic) reactions, or rhinitis. Insect stings, food, antibiotics, and certain medicines may produce a systemic allergic response that is also called anaphylaxis; multiple organ systems can be affected, including the digestive system, the respiratory system, and the circulatory system. Depending on the rate of severity, anaphylaxis can include skin reactions, bronchoconstriction, swelling, low blood pressure, coma, and death.
This type of reaction can be triggered suddenly, or the onset can be delayed. The nature of anaphylaxis is such that the reaction can seem to be subsiding, but may recur throughout a period of time.
Substances that come into contact with the skin, such as latex, are also common causes of allergic reactions, known as contact dermatitis or eczema. Skin allergies frequently cause rashes, or swelling and inflammation within the skin, in what is known as a «weal and flare» reaction characteristic of hives and angioedema.
With insect stings a large local reaction may happen (an area of skin redness greater than 10 cm in size). It can final one to two days. This reaction may also happen after immunotherapy.
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Risk factors for allergy can be placed in two general categories, namely host and environmental factors. Host factors include heredity, sex, race, and age, with heredity being by far the most significant. However, there own been recent increases in the incidence of allergic disorders that cannot be explained by genetic factors alone.
Four major environmental candidates are alterations in exposure to infectious diseases during early childhood, environmental pollution, allergen levels, and dietary changes.
Latex can trigger an IgE-mediated cutaneous, respiratory, and systemic reaction. The prevalence of latex allergy in the general population is believed to be less than one percent. In a hospital study, 1 in 800 surgical patients (0.125 percent) reported latex sensitivity, although the sensitivity among healthcare workers is higher, between seven and ten percent. Researchers attribute this higher level to the exposure of healthcare workers to areas with significant airborne latex allergens, such as operating rooms, intensive-care units, and dental suites.
These latex-rich environments may sensitize healthcare workers who regularly inhale allergenic proteins.
The most prevalent response to latex is an allergic contact dermatitis, a delayed hypersensitive reaction appearing as dry, crusted lesions. This reaction generally lasts 48–96 hours. Sweating or rubbing the area under the glove aggravates the lesions, possibly leading to ulcerations.Anaphylactic reactions happen most often in sensitive patients who own been exposed to a surgeon’s latex gloves during abdominal surgery, but other mucosal exposures, such as dental procedures, can also produce systemic reactions.
Latex and banana sensitivity may cross-react.
Furthermore, those with latex allergy may also own sensitivities to avocado, kiwifruit, and chestnut. These people often own perioral itching and local urticaria. Only occasionally own these food-induced allergies induced systemic responses. Researchers suspect that the cross-reactivity of latex with banana, avocado, kiwifruit, and chestnut occurs because latex proteins are structurally homologous with some other plant proteins.
Main article: Insect sting allergy
Typically, insects which generate allergic responses are either stinging insects (wasps, bees, hornets and ants) or biting insects (mosquitoes, ticks).
Stinging insects inject venom into their victims, whilst biting insects normally introduce anti-coagulants.
Main article: Hygiene hypothesis
Allergic diseases are caused by inappropriate immunological responses to harmless antigens driven by a TH2-mediated immune response. Numerous bacteria and viruses elicit a TH1-mediated immune response, which down-regulates TH2 responses. The first proposed mechanism of action of the hygiene hypothesis was that insufficient stimulation of the TH1 arm of the immune system leads to an overactive TH2 arm, which in turn leads to allergic disease. In other words, individuals living in too sterile an environment are not exposed to enough pathogens to hold the immune system busy.
Since our bodies evolved to deal with a certain level of such pathogens, when they are not exposed to this level, the immune system will attack harmless antigens and thus normally benign microbial objects—like pollen—will trigger an immune response.
The hygiene hypothesis was developed to explain the observation that hay fever and eczema, both allergic diseases, were less common in children from larger families, which were, it is presumed, exposed to more infectious agents through their siblings, than in children from families with only one kid.
The hygiene hypothesis has been extensively investigated by immunologists and epidemiologists and has become an significant theoretical framework for the study of allergic disorders. It is used to explain the increase in allergic diseases that own been seen since industrialization, and the higher incidence of allergic diseases in more developed countries. The hygiene hypothesis has now expanded to include exposure to symbiotic bacteria and parasites as significant modulators of immune system development, along with infectious agents.
Epidemiological data support the hygiene hypothesis. Studies own shown that various immunological and autoimmune diseases are much less common in the developing world than the industrialized world and that immigrants to the industrialized world from the developing world increasingly develop immunological disorders in relation to the length of time since arrival in the industrialized world. Longitudinal studies in the third world protest an increase in immunological disorders as a country grows more affluent and, it is presumed, cleaner. The use of antibiotics in the first year of life has been linked to asthma and other allergic diseases. The use of antibacterial cleaning products has also been associated with higher incidence of asthma, as has birth by Caesarean section rather than vaginal birth.
Main article: Drug allergy
See also: Adverse drug reaction and Drug eruption
About 10% of people report that they are allergic to penicillin; however, 90% turn out not to be. Serious allergies only happen in about 0.03%.
Allergic diseases are strongly familial: identical twins are likely to own the same allergic diseases about 70% of the time; the same allergy occurs about 40% of the time in non-identical twins. Allergic parents are more likely to own allergic children, and those children’s allergies are likely to be more severe than those in children of non-allergic parents.
Some allergies, however, are not consistent along genealogies; parents who are allergic to peanuts may own children who are allergic to ragweed. It seems that the likelihood of developing allergies is inherited and related to an irregularity in the immune system, but the specific allergen is not.
The risk of allergic sensitization and the development of allergies varies with age, with young children most at risk. Several studies own shown that IgE levels are highest in childhood and drop rapidly between the ages of 10 and 30 years. The peak prevalence of hay fever is highest in children and young adults and the incidence of asthma is highest in children under 10.
Overall, boys own a higher risk of developing allergies than girls, although for some diseases, namely asthma in young adults, females are more likely to be affected. These differences between the sexes tend to decrease in adulthood.
Ethnicity may frolic a role in some allergies; however, racial factors own been hard to separate from environmental influences and changes due to migration. It has been suggested that diverse genetic loci are responsible for asthma, to be specific, in people of European, Hispanic, Asian, and African origins.
Main article: Food allergy
A wide variety of foods can cause allergic reactions, but 90% of allergic responses to foods are caused by cow’s milk, soy, eggs, wheat, peanuts, tree nuts, fish, and shellfish. Other food allergies, affecting less than 1 person per 10,000 population, may be considered «rare». The use of hydrolysed milk baby formula versus standard milk baby formula does not appear to change the risk.
The most common food allergy in the US population is a sensitivity to crustacea. Although peanut allergies are notorious for their severity, peanut allergies are not the most common food allergy in adults or children.
Severe or life-threatening reactions may be triggered by other allergens, and are more common when combined with asthma.
Rates of allergies differ between adults and children. Peanut allergies can sometimes be outgrown by children.
Egg allergies affect one to two percent of children but are outgrown by about two-thirds of children by the age of 5. The sensitivity is generally to proteins in the white, rather than the yolk.
Milk-protein allergies are most common in children. Approximately 60% of milk-protein reactions are immunoglobulin E-mediated, with the remaining generally attributable to inflammation of the colon. Some people are unable to tolerate milk from goats or sheep as well as from cows, and numerous are also unable to tolerate dairy products such as cheese.
Roughly 10% of children with a milk allergy will own a reaction to beef. Beef contains little amounts of proteins that are present in greater abundance in cow’s milk.Lactose intolerance, a common reaction to milk, is not a form of allergy at every, but rather due to the absence of an enzyme in the digestive tract.
Those with tree nut allergies may be allergic to one or to numerous tree nuts, including pecans, pistachios, pine nuts, and walnuts. Also seeds, including sesame seeds and poppy seeds, contain oils in which protein is present, which may elicit an allergic reaction.
Allergens can be transferred from one food to another through genetic engineering; however genetic modification can also remove allergens.
Little research has been done on the natural variation of allergen concentrations in unmodified crops.
Chronic stress can aggravate allergic conditions. This has been attributed to a T helper 2 (TH2)-predominant response driven by suppression of interleukin 12 by both the autonomic nervous system and the hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal axis. Stress management in highly susceptible individuals may improve symptoms.
Toxins interacting with proteins
Another non-food protein reaction, urushiol-induced contact dermatitis, originates after contact with poison ivy, eastern poison oak, western poison oak, or poison sumac.
Urushiol, which is not itself a protein, acts as a hapten and chemically reacts with, binds to, and changes the shape of integral membrane proteins on exposed skin cells. The immune system does not recognize the affected cells as normal parts of the body, causing a T-cell-mediated immune response. Of these poisonous plants, sumac is the most virulent. The resulting dermatological response to the reaction between urushiol and membrane proteins includes redness, swelling, papules, vesicles, blisters, and streaking.
Estimates vary on the percentage of the population that will own an immune system response.
Approximately 25 percent of the population will own a strong allergic response to urushiol. In general, approximately 80 percent to 90 percent of adults will develop a rash if they are exposed to .0050 milligrams (7.7×10−5 gr) of purified urushiol, but some people are so sensitive that it takes only a molecular trace on the skin to initiate an allergic reaction.
Other environmental factors
There are differences between countries in the number of individuals within a population having allergies.
Allergic diseases are more common in industrialized countries than in countries that are more traditional or agricultural, and there is a higher rate of allergic disease in urban populations versus rural populations, although these differences are becoming less defined. Historically, the trees planted in urban areas were predominantly male to prevent litter from seeds and fruits, but the high ratio of male trees causes high pollen counts.
Alterations in exposure to microorganisms is another plausible explanation, at present, for the increase in atopic allergy. Endotoxin exposure reduces release of inflammatory cytokines such as TNF-α, IFNγ, interleukin-10, and interleukin-12 from white blood cells (leukocytes) that circulate in the blood. Certain microbe-sensing proteins, known as Toll-like receptors, found on the surface of cells in the body are also thought to be involved in these processes.
Gutworms and similar parasites are present in untreated drinking water in developing countries, and were present in the water of developed countries until the routine chlorination and purification of drinking water supplies. Recent research has shown that some common parasites, such as intestinal worms (e.g., hookworms), secrete chemicals into the gut wall (and, hence, the bloodstream) that suppress the immune system and prevent the body from attacking the parasite. This gives rise to a new slant on the hygiene hypothesis theory—that co-evolution of humans and parasites has led to an immune system that functions correctly only in the presence of the parasites.
Without them, the immune system becomes unbalanced and oversensitive. In specific, research suggests that allergies may coincide with the delayed establishment of gut flora in infants. However, the research to support this theory is conflicting, with some studies performed in China and Ethiopia showing an increase in allergy in people infected with intestinal worms. Clinical trials own been initiated to test the effectiveness of certain worms in treating some allergies. It may be that the term ‘parasite’ could turn out to be inappropriate, and in fact a hitherto unsuspected symbiosis is at work. For more information on this topic, see Helminthic therapy.
Immune system response to a substance that most people tolerate well
For the medical journal of this title, see Allergy (journal).
|Hives are a common allergic symptom|
|Symptoms||Red eyes, itchy rash, runny nose, shortness of breath, swelling, sneezing|
|Types||Hay fever, food allergies, atopic dermatitis, allergic asthma, anaphylaxis|
|Causes||Genetic and environmental factors|
|Diagnostic method||Based on symptoms, skin prick test, blood test|
|Differential diagnosis||Food intolerances, food poisoning|
|Prevention||Early exposure to potential allergens|
|Treatment||Avoiding known allergens, medications, allergen immunotherapy|
|Medication||Steroids, antihistamines, epinephrine, mast cell stabilizers, antileukotrienes|
Allergies, also known as allergic diseases, are a number of conditions caused by hypersensitivity of the immune system to typically harmless substances in the environment. These diseases include hay fever, food allergies, atopic dermatitis, allergic asthma, and anaphylaxis. Symptoms may include red eyes, an itchy rash, sneezing, a runny nose, shortness of breath, or swelling.Food intolerances and food poisoning are separate conditions.
Common allergens include pollen and certain foods. Metals and other substances may also cause problems. Food, insect stings, and medications are common causes of severe reactions. Their development is due to both genetic and environmental factors. The underlying mechanism involves immunoglobulin E antibodies (IgE), part of the body’s immune system, binding to an allergen and then to a receptor on mast cells or basophils where it triggers the release of inflammatory chemicals such as histamine. Diagnosis is typically based on a person’s medical history. Further testing of the skin or blood may be useful in certain cases. Positive tests, however, may not mean there is a significant allergy to the substance in question.
Early exposure to potential allergens may be protective. Treatments for allergies include avoiding known allergens and the use of medications such as steroids and antihistamines. In severe reactions injectable adrenaline (epinephrine) is recommended.Allergen immunotherapy, which gradually exposes people to larger and larger amounts of allergen, is useful for some types of allergies such as hay fever and reactions to insect bites. Its use in food allergies is unclear.
Allergies are common. In the developed world, about 20% of people are affected by allergic rhinitis, about 6% of people own at least one food allergy, and about 20% own atopic dermatitis at some point in time. Depending on the country about 1–18% of people own asthma. Anaphylaxis occurs in between 0.05–2% of people. Rates of numerous allergic diseases appear to be increasing. The expression «allergy» was first used by Clemens von Pirquet in 1906.