Allergies, also known as allergic diseases, are a number of conditions caused by hypersensitivity of the immune system to something in the environment that usually causes little or no problem in most people. These diseases include hay fever, food allergies, atopic dermatitis, allergic asthma, and anaphylaxis.
The frequency of allergies seen is rapidly increasing. First used by Clemens von Pirguet in 1906, the term “allergy” can be defined as an “altered body response” and it stems from the greek “allos” other and “ergos” reaction.
An allergic response is an excessive sensitivity by certain individuals to agents which may not be deemed harmful by others. As a result of this excessive sensitivity a clinical evidence is manifested as an allergy.
|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|
Exposure to allergen may be through:
- Contact with skin (animal hair and epithelium, latex, pollens, poisonous plants)
- By stings (bee stings)
- Oral passage (foods, medication)
- The respiratory tract (pollens, dusts, mold and fungi)
Allergy tests include :
- Pediatric panel
- Food allergy test panel
- Respiratory allergy test panel
- And others