Know How To Use Epinephrine During A Child’s Allergic Reaction
When a child is having a severe allergic reaction, or anaphylaxis, parents need to reach quickly for an EpiPen, Twinject or other self-injectable epinephrine product prescribed by their physician, and use it with confidence. It might save the child's life.
Yet a recent survey of parents of children with food allergies revealed most parents were uncomfortable administering their EpiPen: They were afraid they wouldn't recognize the signs and symptoms of anaphylaxis and feared hurting their children or forgetting how to use the device in an emergency. The authors concluded that health care professionals should take every opportunity to train parents on how to use the EpiPen properly.
So how can you tell if a child is having a severe allergic reaction?
Symptoms of anaphylaxis can include hives, shortness of breath, cough, wheezing, chest tightness, congestion, flushing of skin, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and swelling of lips and tongue.
During a potentially dangerous reaction to foods, insect stings or bites, drugs or other substances, the injected epinephrine (adrenaline) acts quickly to open the airway, reduce throat swelling and maintain blood pressure.
Alyson Sulaski Wyckoff
2005 American Academy of Pediatrics.
AAP News www.aapnews.org December 2005
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