This Factsheet has been written to provide information on severe allergic reactions which have an immediate or rapid type onset...
Give Adrenaline – If you suspect someone is having a severe allergic reaction, give adrenaline WITHOUT DELAY – if available. IF IN DOUBT, GIVE ADRENALINE!
Lie the person flat with legs raised, if breathing is difficult allow to sit with legs raised. Do not stand the person up!
Call for help
Dial 999 for an ambulance and state anaphylaxis (ana -fill- axis) to get medical help as soon as possible.
Stay with the person having the allergic reaction until medical help arrives.
If there is no improvement after five minutes and another adrenaline autoinjector (AAI) is available, a second dose of adrenaline can be given ideally in the other leg.
If a person has an allergic reaction that requires adrenaline, they should always go to hospital for further observation and treatment e.g. additional doses of adrenaline.
Adrenaline is an emergency medicine used to treat a severe allergic reaction. It works quickly to reverse the symptoms of anaphylaxis by reducing swelling, opening up the airway and improving blood pressure.
Antihistamines should never be taken instead of adrenaline in the case of a severe allergic reaction. If asthma and symptoms of a severe allergic reaction occur at the same time then adrenaline should always be given first and the asthma relief inhaler afterwards.
AAIs are prescribed by a doctor for those at risk of a severe allergic reaction based on an individual’s needs. They are designed to be user-friendly and to be used by anyone that has been trained
It is important to know how to use the type of AAI you have been prescribed.