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A severe systemic allergic reaction involving both circulatory and respiratory changes, often accompanied by skin changes. It can be fatal if not diagnosed, addressed and treated quickly and correctly. The Resuscitation Council defines anaphylaxis by the following ABC criteria:
Early IM injection with adrenaline is the treatment of choice. Give adrenaline IM at midpoint of anterolateral thigh (through light clothing if necessary). Repeat after 5 mins if condition not improved or getting worse. ALWAYS FOLLOW LATEST GUIDANCE. Adrenaline dosage for anaphylaxis is:
Individuals at risk of anaphylaxis need to carry an adrenaline autoinjector at all times, and need to be instructed in advance when and how to inject it. Latest guidance is that:
Autoinjection devices should be prescribed by brand name as instructions for use vary between devices, and it is essential that the individual has the type of injector that they have been instructed how to use.
The Anaphylaxis Campaign website has guidance for health professionals on how to use these devices.
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Dealing with emergencies in general practice: Anaphylaxis Beverley Bostock-Cox