What is anaphylaxis?

Anaphylaxis is a severe and potentially life threatening reaction to an allergen.


The most common allergens that can cause anaphylaxis are bees, latex, medication and foods. Some of the more common food allergens are peanuts, dairy, eggs, soy and other nuts. Different areas of the body can have different symptoms. An anaphylaxis reaction typically occurs immediately after exposure to the allergen. Some people may have a second wave of reaction later, even if treated. Symptoms include difficulty breathing, swelling to the exposed area (bee sting), swelling to the airway, vomiting, diarrhea, severe rash and decreased blood pressure (pale, weak pulse, fainting). People who have a known allergy that may result in anaphylaxis should have a prescription for epinephrine, an auto-injector they carry with them at all times.

Anaphylaxis and School:

If you have a child with severe allergies that may have or has resulted in anaphylaxis, let the school nurse know right away. They will develop and Allergy Action Plan for your child. Your child will need to have a current Medication Form on file at school if epinephrine or benadryl is necessary. Staff is trained annually by our Credentialed School Nurses to administer epinephrine during an anaphylactic emergency. If you are unable to accompany your child on a field trip, a trained staff member will be available during the field trip in case an emergency arises. If your child has a food allergy and needs meal accommodations while at school please have your physician fill out a Meal Accommodation Form and return it to school.

All forms mentioned above can be found in the Forms tab. You may also pick them up in your child's school office.

If you or a family member has a severe allergy, you can print out this card and keep it with them at all times.