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Clin Rev Allergy Immunol. 2018 Jun;54(3):366-374. doi: 10.1007/s12016-015-8503-x.

The Epidemiology of Anaphylaxis.

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Division of Allergy, Immunology, and Rheumatology, Department of Pediatrics, Morgan Stanley Children's Hospital of New York-Presbyterian, Columbia University Medical Center, New York, NY, USA.
Department of Medicine, Weill Cornell Medical Center, New York, NY, USA.


Anaphylaxis is a dramatic expression of systemic allergy. The lifetime prevalence of anaphylaxis is currently estimated at 0.05-2 % in the USA and ~3 % in Europe. Several population-specific studies have noted a rise in the incidence, particularly in the hospitalizations and ER visits due to anaphylaxis. The variable signs and symptoms that constitute the diagnostic criteria for anaphylaxis, the differences in diagnostic algorithms, and the limitations in the current coding systems have made summarizing epidemiologic data and comparing study results challenging. Nevertheless, across all studies, the most common triggers continue to be medications, food, and venom. Various risk factors for more severe reactions generally include older age, history of asthma, and having more comorbid diseases. Interesting seasonal, geographic, and latitude differences have been observed in anaphylaxis prevalence and incidence rates, suggesting a possible role of vitamin D and sun exposure in modifying anaphylaxis risk. While the incidence and prevalence of anaphylaxis appear to be increasing in certain populations, the overall fatality rate remains relatively low.


Anaphylaxis; Biphasic; Epidemiology; Fatality; Incidence; Prevalence; Risk factor; Triggers

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