Many of us experience allergy symptoms to things like pollen, animal dander and dust. Usually, these allergic responses are only mildly annoying, requiring us to pop a decongestant or antihistamine so we can carry on with our day.
There are those of us, however, who must take great care to avoid potential allergens because they pose a serious threat to our health and safety. Although food, animals and plants seem to be the most common culprits of allergic response, there are some who have a severe allergy to certain medications such as antibiotics, pain relievers and even certain chemotherapy drugs.
Drug allergies should be taken seriously by health professionals
When you experience an allergic reaction to a medication, you may experience similar symptoms as an environmental allergen would trigger. These include things like:
- Itchy, red and swollen skin
- Hives or rashes
- Watery eyes
- Runny nose
- Wheezing or difficulty breathing
In more extreme cases, you may even experience anaphylaxis, which is a systemic response that could cause detrimental cardiovascular, neurological and digestive effects, perhaps even causing a seizure or fatality.
Usually, if you have a known drug allergy, it is recorded in your medical chart. If you are admitted to the hospital for emergency care, your healthcare team is responsible for reviewing known allergies to ensure that any medication you receive will help and not hurt you. You count on them to provide you with utmost care and pay attention to such important details.
Still, sometimes healthcare professionals are distracted, tired or overburdened with cases, and mistakes happen. If you receive a medication to which you have a known allergy, and it results in a serious injury, you may have grounds for a medical malpractice claim.