Drug Allergy

Editor: V. Dimov, M.D., Allergist/Immunologist, Cleveland Clinic Florida, Clinical Associate Professor, FAU Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine

Adverse drug reactions affect up to 10% of people. When drug reactions resembling allergy happen, they are called drug hypersensitivity reactions (DHRs). Drug hypersensitivity reactions may be allergic or nonallergic. Drug allergies are drug hypersensitivity reactions caused by the immune system. Drug hypersensitivity reactions (DHRs) are nowadays the 3rd cause of allergy after rhinitis and asthma.

Hives (urticaria) and angioedema
Contact dermatitis

Drug allergy management in 5 steps (click to enlarge the image).

Classification of adverse drug reactions (ADR) (click to enlarge the image).

Mnemonic for classification of adverse drug reactions: "SOAP III" (click to enlarge the image).

What to expect when visiting an allergy clinic

Current allergy skin tests are virtually painless. This video by Dr. Bassett, a board-certified allergist from New York City, shows what to expect when visiting an allergy clinic for diagnosis and treatment:

Related reading:

Question to ask if a patient has a suspected episode of anaphylaxis
AAAAI Penicillin Toolbox

Image source: Wikipedia, GNU Free Documentation License.

Published: 07/01/2007
Updated: 09/02/2019

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