Allergy Definitions

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allergy-terms-definitionsAllergy Definitions

Here are some uncommon allergy related definitions to refer to when coming across an unknown term in a post.

You spoke and we listened so here they are:

Note: Examples listed  in parentheses when appropriate.

  • Allergen: A substance that is foreign to the body and which may cause an allergic reaction in certain people. (Dander, mold,pollen)
  • Allergic contact dermatitis: A red and itchy allergic reaction where the skin has come into contact with a substance that the immune system sees as foreign. (poison ivy, poison oak, creames, lotions.
  • Allergic reaction: An immune system response to a substance in a allergic individual.
  • Anaphylactic shock: A severe allergic reaction which can include loss of consciousness, breathing problems, swelling of the tongue and breathing, low blood pressure, heart failure or even death.  (most common in bee, wasp stings and seafood consumption) Immediate treatment is paramount and the administration of a antivenom in the case of bee or wasp stings.
  • Conjunctivitis:Inflammation caused by an allergic reaction to the whites of the eyes (the conjunctivae). Conjunctivitis is also referred to as pink eye..
  • Eczema: An allergic and inflammatory reaction of the skin. (reddening, swelling, bumps and scaling of the skin)
  • HEPA: High Efficient Particulate Air (Arrestance) The best filtration technology for cleaning surfaces and air.
  • Histamine: Substance that plays a major role in many allergic reactions. Histamine dilates blood vessels and makes the vessel walls abnormally permeable.
  • Hives: A raised and itchy area of skin that is almost always due to an allergic reaction. (rounded, flat, elevated above the surrounding skin)
  • Immunoglobulin: A protein produced by plasma cells and lymphocytes and characteristic of these types of cells. Immunoglobulins play an essential role in the body’s immune system. They attach to foreign substances, such as bacteria, and assist in destroying them. Immunoglobulin is abbreviated Ig. The classes of immunoglobulins are termed immunoglobulin A (IgA), immunoglobulin G (IgG), immunoglobulin M (IgM), immunoglobulin D (IgD) and immunoglobulin E (IgE).
  • Immunoglobulin E: Abbreviated IgE. A class of immunoglobulins that includes the antibodies elicited by an allergic substance (allergen). A person who has an allergy usually has elevated blood levels of IgE. IgE antibodies attack and engage the invading army of allergens.
  • Insulin: A natural hormone manufactured by the pancreas. Insulin controls the level of the sugar glucose in the blood allows cells to use glucose for energy. Cells cannot use glucose without insulin.
  • Serum: The clear liquid that can be separated through mechanical means from clotted blood. Serum is different from blood plasma in that it does not contain red and white blood cells or platelets.
  • Spasm: An automatic jerking movement caused by the muscle which can be painful when the muscle clenches tightly.  Spasms in various types of human tissue may be caused by stress, medication, over-exercise and other factors.
  • Urticaria: Another name for the hives .
  • Vaccines: Microbial preparations of dead and/or modified microorganisms that can stimulate an positive immune response in the body to prevent future infection. (usually administered by injection)

Courtesy of the staff at Allergy Relief Expert.

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