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How to Treat a Severe Allergic Reaction aka Anaphylaxis

Learn how to treat a severe allergic reaction aka anaphylaxis in this first aid video from Howcast with Nurse Mary.


So what do you do when you have a severe allergic reaction? Something that's more than just a little itchiness. This is called anaphylaxis. This is where your airway is being impeded. You're swelling from the inside out. You have hives, your face can get big, you can get welts all over your body. You can feel short of breath. You can feel wheezing, like a tight chest. It's very important to get help right away. If you see somebody who's having these symptoms, you call 911 right away. It can be very fatal and it can get there very quickly. If you're in someplace where they have an allergy kit, sometimes they have things like EpiPens or things like that, open the kit. Follow the instructions. Call 911. Get on the line with the dispatcher. They'll help you through, they'll walk you through what you need to do. Stay with that person. Watch their breathing. Watch their pulse. And keep on the line and just wait for the ambulance to come. It is very important for them to get help right away. With a severe allergic reaction people will be choking but it's not the same as if you were to give a Heimlich Maneuver. There's nothing that you can dislodge. It's all their own tissue that's swelling up and obstructing their airflow. You need to get help right away because there are treatments that only a trained professional can do to help this person before it becomes fatal.

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