• Food Allergies. An allergic reaction to food can cause mild to serious symptoms such as vomiting or nausea, stomach cramps, indigestion, diarrhea, hives or other skin rashes, headaches, asthma, or stuffy nose, sneezing and runny nose. In extreme cases, food allergy can trigger a severe and life-threatening reaction called anaphylaxis. Some mild symptoms may actually be caused by a food sensitivity rather than an allergic reaction. An allergist can help determine if it is a true allergic reaction. Shellfish, peanuts and tree nuts are the most common food allergies in adults. Milk, eggs, soy, wheat, shellfish, peanuts and tree nuts are the most common food allergies in children.
• Anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis is a rare allergic reaction that affects many parts of the body at the same time. If not treated quickly, it can be fatal. The trigger may be an insect sting, a food (such as peanuts), the latex in rubber products or a medication. The most dangerous symptoms of anaphylaxis affect the respiratory system (breathing) or cardiovascular system (heart and blood pressure). Symptoms can include some or all of the following:
oHives, itchiness and redness on the skin, lips, eyelids or other areas of the body oWheezing or difficulty breathing oSwelling of the tongue, throat, nose and lips oNausea, stomach cramping and vomiting or diarrhea oDizziness and fainting or loss of consciousness, which can lead to shock and heart failure
Frequently these symptoms start suddenly without warning and rapidly get worse. At the first sign of anaphylaxis, a patient should get help immediately, call 911 or go to the closest emergency room. An allergist can help determine the triggers of anaphylaxis.
• Sinus infections. Sinus infections, also called sinusitis, are common in people with allergies that affect the nose such as allergic rhinitis. The constant stuffy and runny nose can inflame the nasal passages and make them swell. Symptoms include a runny nose with a thick discharge, cough and occasionally pain in the forehead, around and in between the eyes, or in the upper jaw, cheeks and teeth. In some cases, sinusitis can be chronic and cause several infections a year. People with asthma are more likely to have chronic sinus infections that can complicate their disease and make their symptoms more severe.