Read about anaphylactic shock medical facts: what is the definition of anaphylactic shock, what are the signs and symptoms, medical treatment & how to treat anaphylactic shock, information about the causes, diagnosis, and related anaphylactic shock diseases.

Definition: What is "Anaphylactic Shock"?


Anaphylactic Shock is also called Anaphylaxis. It is a life-threatening type of allergic reaction in humans & other mammals. It occurs when an allergic response triggers a rapid release from mast cells of huge quantities of immunological mediators leading to systemic vasodilation & edema of bronchial mucosa. Anaphylactic shock can advance to death in a count of minutes if left untreated. Anaphylactic Shock may occur after ingestion, injection of an allergen, skin contact or, in rare cases, inhalation.

Symptoms & Signs

Symptoms include the following: respiratory distress, fainting, unconsciousness, flushed appearance, vomiting, itching, diarrhea & abdominal pain.

Treatment: How to Treat "Anaphylactic Shock"?

Anaphylactic Shock is an emergency ailment requiring immediate professional medical attention. Estimation of the ABC's or the airway, breathing & circulation from Basic Life Support should be completed in all unproven anaphylactic reactions.


After an early exposure to a substance like bee sting toxin, the person's immune system becomes induced to that allergen; Shocking dose. Some drugs like polymyxin, morphine, x-ray dye & others may cause an "anaphylactoid" reaction on the first contact.


Medication of the skin may indicate hives & swelling of the eyes or face. The skin may be blue from lack of oxygen or may be whitish from shock. Testing for the definite allergen that caused anaphylaxis is deferred until after treatment.

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