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First Aid Treatment for Anaphylaxis

ASCIA First Aid for anaphylaxis 2017Anaphylaxis is a severe allergic reaction and potentially life threatening. It should always be treated as a medical emergency, requiring immediate treatment. Most cases of anaphylaxis occur after a person with a severe allergy is exposed to the allergen they are allergic to (usually a food, insect or medication).

pdfASCIA First aid for anaphylaxis 2017258.21 KB

SIGNS OF MILD TO MODERATE ALLERGIC REACTION
  • Swelling of face, lips and eyes
  • Hives or welts
  • Tingling mouth
  • Abdominal pain, vomiting (these are signs of anaphylaxis for insect allergy)
ACTION FOR MILD TO MODERATE ALLERGIC REACTION
  • For insect allergy - flick out sting if visible
  • For tick allergy - freeze dry tick and allow to drop off
  • Stay with person and call for help
  • Locate adrenaline (epinephrine) autoinjector
  • Phone family/emergency contact

Mild to moderate allergic reactions (such as hives or swelling) may not always occur before anaphylaxis (severe allergic reaction)

WATCH FOR ANY ONE OF THE FOLLOWING SIGNS OF ANAPHYLAXIS

Continue to watch for any one of the following signs of anaphylaxis (severe allergic reaction):

- Difficult/noisy breathing
- Swelling of tongue
- Swelling/tightness in throat
- Difficulty talking and/or hoarse voice
- Wheeze or persistent cough
- Persistent dizziness or collapse
- Pale and floppy (in young children)

ACTION FOR ANAPHYLAXIS (SEVERE ALLERGIC REACTION)

lay flat

1 Lay person flat 
Do NOT allow them to stand or walk
If unconscious, place in recovery position
If breathing is difficult allow them to sit

2 Give adrenaline autoinjector

3 Phone ambulance - 000 (AU) or 111 (NZ)

4 Phone family/emergency contact

5 Further adrenaline doses may be given if no response after 5 minutes

6 Transfer person to hospital for at least 4 hours of observation

If in doubt give adrenaline autoinjector

Commence CPR at any time if person is unresponsive and not breathing normally

ALWAYS give adrenaline autoinjector FIRST, and then asthma reliever puffer
if someone with known asthma and allergy to food, insects or medication has SUDDEN BREATHING DIFFICULTY (including wheeze, persistent cough or hoarse voice) even if there are no skin symptoms

© ASCIA 2017
 
For further information on anaphylaxis visit www.allergy.org.au - the web site of ASCIA.
ASCIA is the peak professional body of clinical immunology/allergy specialists in Australia and New Zealand.

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