How do I treat anaphylaxis when I am having an allergic reaction?
Call 911 to get emergency medical help, even if you do not feel very sick. Get your anaphylaxis kit. Inject yourself with epinephrine or have someone else do it. If your doctor has recommended it, take an antihistamine. If you stop breathing, you may need someone to perform CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) on you until help arrives.
What is in an emergency anaphylaxis kit?
If you have a severe allergic reaction, you might need medical help right away. An emergency anaphylaxis kit contains medicine to counteract your allergic reaction. This medicine is usually a drug called epinephrine that you inject into your arm or leg (or have a friend inject). Your doctor will prescribe a kit with the right dose of medicine and will teach you how to use it. Make sure your family, friends and coworkers also know how to use the kit. Sometimes your doctor will tell you to keep an antihistamine, such as diphenhydramine (one brand name: Benadryl), in the kit too.
What can I expect after anaphylaxis?
You should recover completely with treatment. Most people live a normal, full life. You can get back to your normal activities once you are feeling better. However, you should have someone stay with you for 24 hours after anaphylaxis to make sure another attack does not happen.
Written by familydoctor.org editorial staff