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Allergy to multiple local anesthetics

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Real allergy to local anesthetic (LA) is very rare. This study was performed to report a case of anaphylaxis to multiple “caine.” A 25-years-old atopic nurse developed a very severe anaphylactic reaction on her third infiltration for low back pain with bupivacaine, lidocaine, and methylprednisolone: she developed a vagal reaction, followed during the next 30 minutes by a pruriginous skin rash, followed by a tongue edema and a severe bronchospasm. Adrenalin was injected with a poor response. She was intubated and transferred to the intensive care unit for a few days and, finally, she recuperated completely. Skin-prick tests were done on two occasions. In the first session, no reactions were observed with triamcinolone and methylprednisolone at 1 mg/cc, but a rapid extending maculopapular erythema developed with a final diameter of 50 mm with lidocaine 0.1% (group 2) and 25 mm with procaine 2% (group 1): control 0 mm, histamine, 3 mm. She also complained of itchiness in the neck and shoulder, which resolved in the next 90 minutes. In the second session, a test with bupivacaine 0.0005% (group 2) gave a papule with a diameter of >5 mm, and a test with mepivacaine 0.001% (group 2) was negative: control, histamine, 3 mm; no subsequent tests with mepivacaine were done because she developed a cough and throat pruritus, voice modification, and a sensation of throat narrowing, that resolved with treatment. We reported a case of anaphylaxis to multiple LA (groups 1 and 2), possibly via an IgE-mediated mechanism.
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Keywords: Allergy; IgE-mediated; anaphylaxis; drug; drug allergy; local anesthetic; skin tests

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: From the Adjoint de Clinique, Université de Montréal, CHUM, Hôpital Notre-Dame, Montréal, Cité de la Santé de Laval, Canada

Publication date: 01 September 2007

More about this publication?
  • Allergy and Asthma Proceedings is a peer reviewed publication dedicated to distributing timely scientific research regarding advancements in the knowledge and practice of allergy, asthma and immunology. Its primary readership consists of allergists and pulmonologists.

    The goal of the Proceedings is to publish articles with a predominantly clinical focus which directly impact quality of care for patients with allergic disease and asthma.

    Featured topics include asthma, rhinitis, sinusitis, food allergies, allergic skin diseases, diagnostic techniques, allergens, and treatment modalities. Published material includes peer-reviewed original research, clinical trials and review articles.

    Articles marked "F" offer free full text for personal noncommercial use only.

    The journal is indexed in Thomson Reuters Web of Science and Science Citation Index Expanded, plus the National Library of Medicine's PubMed service.
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