Hives are a medical condition affecting the skin. The skin gets swollen up with red patches and the condition is often accompanied by severe itching. Hives that are caused after the consumption of seafood are referred to as seafood allergy hives.
Usually, consumption of certain seafood like crabs and shellfish can lead to seafood allergy hives. These seafood can cause allergic reactions in the body leading to hives. The human body’s immune system mistakes the seafood for harmful antigens and releases chemical called histamine as a response.
This generates the seafood allergy hive. Seafood is one of the top eight allergens. But it is a little difficult to outgrow seafood allergies.
What causes the Seafood Allergy?
Raw seafood tends to be more allergic than cooked seafood as the allergenic protein is denatured by the process of cooking. Shellfish allergies can have severe reactions such as anaphylactic shock. So once contaminated with this disease, one should strictly avoid all kinds of seafood.
Cross-reactivity can also occur in case of seafood allergy. The presence of the tropomyosin protein causes the allergy problems. Sometimes the gelatin present in the skin and bones of shellfish can lead to allergy hives.
In case one is allergic to one kind of seafood, he or she might be allergic to others as well. For example if one is allergic to shrimp, one can be allergic to crabs as well. Certain mollusks like oysters and clams can also lead to seafood allergy hives. Nonetheless some people can be allergic to both mollusks and crustaceans
Seafood allergy hives can be very severe and so if you are allergic to seafood, the best way to get rid of this allergy is to avoid the consumption of seafood that triggers the allergens in the body. Take more care in the summer when on vacation to seaside towns where seasonal allergy hives can also play a part.
However, at times it becomes difficult to detect the presence of seafood in some of the dishes so keeping the injection of epinephrine is always advisable. Epinephrine can always save from anaphylactic attacks.
Diagnosis and Treatment
To diagnose seafood allergy hive, two tests need to be carried out, a skin test and a blood test.
Antihistamines are known to reduce the signs and symptoms of hives caused due to seafood.
Mild seafood allergy hives accompanied by a running nose can be treated with antihistamines. However, if the reaction is anaphylactic, one must see a doctor.
In case of emergency, an injection of epinephrine can come to the rescue.
Seafood allergy hives are a common disease affecting numerous across the globe. With proper prevention, diagnosis and treatment, seafood allergy hives can be brought considerably under control.