Anaphylaxis is a severe, immediate allergic reaction. Symptoms that can be life-threatening occur within seconds to minutes, rarely hours, after contact with the allergenic substance.
The term anaphylaxis is used for reactions which follow a severe course and affect at least two organ systems such as skin (urticaria, swellings in the mouth/throat/facial area) and airways (acute asthma attack, shortness of breath), skin and gastrointestinal tract (vomiting, colic, diarrhoea), airways and circulatory system (severe weakness, general debility, severe dizziness, drop in blood pressure, collapse, loss of consciousness and shock) or skin, gastrointestinal tract and circulatory system as well as other combinations. Circulatory collapse alone is rarely observed.
It is estimated that each year about 10 people per 100,000 inhabitants experience a life-threatening anaphylactic shock, which is approx. 300 cases per year in Switzerland. One to three people in a million die from a severe allergic reaction.
More information can be found on the page on the subject of Anaphylaxis
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