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Insect Allergy

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by Carson-DeWitt R

Risk Factors

Other factors that may increase your chance of insect allergies include:


An allergy to biting and stinging insects can affect the area around the bite or sting and cause:
Anaphylaxis can be a life-threatening reaction that causes:
  • Skin rash, hives, itching, swelling in areas away from the sting site
  • Swelling of lips, tongue, face, throat, and eyelids
  • Difficulty breathing, shortness of breath, coughing, wheezing
  • Lightheadedness, fainting
  • Severe drop in blood pressure
  • Respiratory and/or cardiac arrest
Some insects cause respiratory allergies that result in:
  • Runny nose
  • Sneezing
  • Coughing
  • Wheezing
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Shortness of breath


American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology

Joint Council of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology



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Adkinson NF. Middleton’s Allergy: Principles and Practice. 7th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Mosby-Year Book; 2009.

Hymenoptera sting allergy. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: Updated January 6, 2014. Accessed August 12, 2014.

Insect sting allergy. American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology website. Available at: Accessed August 12, 2014.

Middleton's Allergy: Principles and Practice. 5th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Mosby-Year Book; 1998.

Rank MA, Li JT. Allergen immunotherapy. Mayo Clin Proc. 2007;82:1119-1123.


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