Hi! My name is Mathew, and I’m allergic to peanuts, tree nuts, and milk. I have never had an allergic reaction that was severe enough for me to be hospitalized, but a friend of mine who has a severe nut allergy was recently hospitalized twice in two days. I wanted to share her experience.
After a weekend out at the VELD music festival, she arrived home late on a Sunday night. Tired from 48 hours of dancing, drinking, and not sleeping, she lay down in her bed to get much needed rest. After a few hours of sleep, during which she did not eat or apply any cosmetic products, she began to feel the symptoms of an allergic reaction. She eventually decided to take some antihistamines. She then went to her parents, because the symptoms were slowly becoming more severe. Her parents did not feel that she needed to be taken to the hospital – but she found that speaking and breathing were slowly becoming more troublesome, so she called a cab to take her there.
Upon arrival at the hospital, she saw the triage nurse and was shifted from waiting room to waiting room. Eventually she mentioned that her throat felt very tiny, but it may just be her asthma. She was immediately rushed to the emergency room where she was hooked into an IV and given an epinephrine injection. She was held in the hospital to be monitored until she was eventually sent home with some medication. A few hours after she arrived home, the hives re-appeared. She took antihistamines again and went to sleep.
She woke up from her sleep with trouble breathing. Thinking that it was her asthma, she took her puffer. Her troubled breathing persisted. She called 911, went outside and passed out. She woke up in the hospital being treated for her reaction. She says that the process the second time around was very similar to the first time.
She knows that what happened was an allergic reaction, but she has no idea what caused it.