Food and pollen allergies are some of the most well-known allergies, but did you know that it’s possible to have an allergic reaction to a prescription or over-the-counter medication? People who have drug allergies can have an adverse reaction to a certain medication. The allergists at Advanced Allergy & Asthma Associates are here to diagnose and treat medication allergies. To learn more, contact the Fort Worth or Southlake, Texas, offices or book your first appointment online.
If you have an adverse reaction when you take a medication, you might have a drug allergy. Drug allergies are common, and they can occur with both over-the-counter and prescription medications. Allergies to vitamins, dietary supplements, and herbal medications are also considered drug allergies.
An allergy to a drug can develop when your body’s immune system identifies an element in it as a foreign substance that needs to be attacked. When you take the medication, your body produces a histamine response with allergy symptoms.
Drug allergies can range in severity, but symptoms often include a skin rash or hives. They may also cause itchy eyes, runny nose, or facial swelling. In some cases, drug allergies can cause extreme, life-threatening allergic reactions called anaphylaxis.
It’s possible to have an allergy to any medication, but some drug allergies are more common than others. Common drugs linked to allergies include:
Drug allergies are different than the side effects caused by certain medications. While side effects can happen to anyone, drug allergies only affect certain people and symptoms are different.
Don’t hesitate to make an appointment with the allergy experts at Advanced Allergy & Asthma Associates if you think you might have a drug allergy. The first step in treating drug allergy is to confirm the drug allergy. Approximately 10% of people report a penicillin allergy, but the majority of patients (more than 90%) may not be allergic. A comprehensive exam and proper diagnosis are important to ensure you get the best possible medical care.
Your drug allergy can be diagnosed with a medical history, physical exam and an allergy test. Come prepared to discuss your symptoms, and the team can determine if you have an allergy.
Drug allergy treatment is focused on eliminating any existing symptoms, like hives or rash, and preventing exposure to the drug in the future. Existing symptoms can generally be treated with antihistamines, corticosteroids, or a bronchodilator inhaler.
If you have a known drug allergy, you should take steps to avoid the drug. Consider wearing a medical bracelet that identifies your allergy in case of an emergency, and always be sure to tell your health care team of any drug allergies.
Trust the team at Advanced Allergy & Asthma Associates for comprehensive drug allergy testing and diagnosis. Request an appointment online or on the phone today.