Allergy Pass / Anaphylaxis Pass

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Allergy Pass / Anaphylaxis Pass
Allergy Pass / Anaphylaxis Pass

Video: Allergy Pass / Anaphylaxis Pass

Video: Allergy Pass / Anaphylaxis Pass
Video: A Wakeup Call – Heather’s Story of Anaphylaxis 2023, March
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Allergy pass / anaphylaxis pass

The nose is runny, the eyes are reddened, the lips and mouth itch when you bite an apple: Allergic reactions can be very diverse. But it is not always clear which substance the body is allergic to. An allergy test can help find out which substances are causing an allergic reaction. After an allergy test has been carried out, you will receive an allergy pass in which the relevant allergens are noted…

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  • Advice, downloads & tools
  • What is an allergy?
  • Allergy test: in the laboratory and on the skin
  • Allergy pass / anaphylaxis pass - important for emergencies
  • When can an allergy test be carried out?
  • Whom can I ask?
  • How are the costs going to be covered?

What is an allergy?

An allergy is an overreaction of the body to certain substances that are normally harmless. These include, for example:

  • Pollen (grasses, trees, weeds)
  • House dust mites
  • Certain foods (e.g. apple, hazelnut, walnut, peach, peanut)
  • Certain active pharmaceutical ingredients (e.g. penicillin)
  • Insecticides (e.g. bee, wasp)

Substances which are harmless in themselves and which are classified as "foreign" by the body and which can trigger allergic inflammation are referred to as "allergens". When the allergen comes into contact for the first time, the immune system forms immunoglobulins of the so-called "IgE" class against the allergen in question (sensitization), and every subsequent contact can result in a violent defense reaction within minutes.

Note A food allergy should not be confused with an intolerance. In the case of food intolerance, certain components of the food are incorrectly metabolized. This leads to various complaints that are uncomfortable but never acutely dangerous. In contrast, in the case of a food allergy, the body incorrectly recognizes one or more substances in the food as harmful and reacts immediately and violently to them.

Allergy test: in the laboratory and on the skin

The allergy diagnosis is carried out on the one hand by means of blood samples for IgE immunoglobulins in the blood that are directed against the allergens, on the other hand it can also be carried out by means of skin tests. In both cases it is determined which allergens mainly trigger the allergic reactions. Positive results can also be triggered by randomly similar allergens. This is called cross-reactivity. With new IgE tests, only a very small amount of blood is required, and between 112 and 282 allergens can be tested simultaneously. During the skin test, the suspicious allergens are applied to the skin in droplets and then introduced with a fine lancet. The reaction is read after 20 minutes. If a wheal develops, this can provide an indication of the relevant allergen. Every result, whether from a blood test or skin test,must be reconciled with the symptoms in order to pinpoint the real triggers of the allergic reactions.

A skin test can remain negative, especially when diagnosing food allergies, or it is not advisable because of previous severe allergic reactions. Then IgE testing can provide a statement. New tests, in particular, allow a risk assessment, namely whether a food allergy exists and how dangerous it is. In addition to the findings, patients who have been found to have an allergy also receive an allergy pass in which the relevant allergens are noted, especially if they are at risk of severe reactions. The allergy passport also states whether an adrenaline auto-injector has been prescribed for the treatment of anaphylaxis.

Allergy pass / anaphylaxis pass - important for emergencies

If you are allergic to medication, an allergy passport can be very helpful as an orientation aid for the attending physician in order to avoid allergic reactions before prescribing medication.

Allergy sufferers should always carry their allergy pass with them, especially if they have already had severe reactions, and take it out as soon as possible at the beginning of an allergy event. In an emergency, for example, in the event of a severe allergic reaction or even an allergic shock with unconsciousness, the doctor can see that and what the patient is allergic to. Family and friends should be well informed about the allergen trigger and possible reactions. Until the doctor arrives, the source of the allergen should be removed immediately if possible and the following measures should be taken:

  • Spitting out remaining food and rinsing the mouth with cold water,
  • Counteract swelling in the mouth area with ice,
  • Removal of the insect sting and sucking out the poison,
  • Binding of the affected part of the body,
  • Keep Calm,
  • Sit down, lie down better, and avoid any physical activity in order to delay the spread of allergens into the blood.
  • If you are dizzy, immediately lay your feet flat and legs up.
  • Patients at risk carry one (or better two) adrenaline self-injectors with them, the storage location and use of which they themselves, as well as their family, friends, teaching staff or colleagues should be instructed.
  • For trips abroad, it is advisable to have an English allergy or anaphylaxis passport with you, as well as a confirmation that adrenaline autoinjectors must be carried in hand luggage due to the diagnosis of anaphylaxis.

When can an allergy test be carried out?

If an allergy is suspected, an allergy test can be carried out. In principle, anyone can be tested for allergies regardless of age (from eight months). In small children, skin tests are sometimes dispensed with, also because of the limited skin area and the often severe itching and discomfort associated with it, and only a blood sample is taken. The new IgE tests, which only require small amounts of blood, are advantageous here.

Whom can I ask?

There are special facilities for diagnosing allergies - such as allergy outpatient departments and hospital outpatient departments specializing in allergy, specializing in ENT, skin, pulmonary and pediatric medicine. You will receive the referral required for this from your supervising doctor. In addition, you can also choose private allergy centers if you are very suffering.

How are the costs going to be covered?

The costs for allergy diagnostics are covered differently by the individual health insurance companies. For more information, please contact your health insurance company or your allergist directly. There are no costs for issuing an allergy pass.

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