Welcome to Episode 134 of the Nursing Show
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Tip of The Week- Understanding Allergies
Allergies are reactions of the immune system to certain things that does not bother most other people. Common allergens include pollen, dust mites, mold spores, certain types of food, insect stings and medications.
Allergies can cause a runny nose, sneezing, itching, rashes, swelling or asthma. Symptoms vary. Although allergies can make you feel bad, they usually won’t kill you. However, a severe reaction called anaphylaxis is life-threatening.
There are tests that can be done to determine if a person is hypersensitive to a a substance. Types of tests are in vivo or skin/scratch test, in vitro or the measurement of specific IgE antibodies, and provocation testing where an allergen is introduced one at a time and the subject is observed for presence of reactions.
Though allergic reactions can resolve on its own, the symptoms that it produces may be rather discomforting. Medications that can be given to resolve hypersensitivity include Corticosteroids, Antihistamines, Decongestants, and other medications that work by blocking symptom-causing chemicals released during an allergic reaction such as Montelukast, Cromolyn Sodium and Mast cell stabilizers.
Immunotherapy or allergy shots can also be done to desensitize the patient to decrease or eliminate the need for medications. For patients with severe allergic reactions or anaphylaxis, epinephrine shots may be given.
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Song this week: Julia Wilde with “People Like Us”
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