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Main > Specialty Areas > Immunology >
Allergies

What is Allergies?

The term "allergy" was used for the first time in 1906 by Clemens Pirquet (1874-1929), an Austrian pediatrician. An allergic reaction occurs when the immune system actively responds to various substances that are usually pretty harmless to health and tries to protect the body against them. In other words, an allergy is a heightened sensitivity of the organism to specific factors, which are known as allergens.

Allergies are a global medical problem: twenty percent (20%) of the world's population suffer from allergies. During the last 30 years, the incidence of allergies have been doubling every 10 years – today, over 5% of the world's adults and 15% of children suffer from various types of allergies.

Causes of Allergies ››

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Random Useful Tip:
Epinephrine shot
If you are known to have a severe anaphylactic reaction, carry an epinephrine (adrenaline) shot with you at all times. Pay attention to expiration date and replace it regularly: upon expiration, it loses its effectiveness.

Random Drug Info:
Acyclovir
Acyclovir is a medication that is used to treat herpes infections of the skin, lips and genitals, chicken pox and shingles. It comes in the form of ointments, tablets, capsules or liquids. It relieves pain and itchiness and promotes healing; however, it does not cure the condition. Possible (but not common) side effects include headaches, upset stomach, vomiting and diarrhea. Severe side effects, such as severe rash or itching, blood in the urine, stomach pain or fever are even less common, but require prompt medical attention.



 
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