Tick anaphylaxis awareness needed

The study of more than 550 cases of tick bites treated at Mona Vale Hospital over a two-year period found 6% resulted in anaphylaxis.

Of those suffering anaphylaxis, cutaneous features (urticaria, erythema, conjunctival tearing and angioedema) were the most common (94%), while 44% had a history of allergy or previous anaphylaxis. The most common body site of the bite was the head and neck (57%), followed by the trunk (20%).

The majority (71%) of the anaphylaxis group were discharged with prednisone and 47% were discharged with an antihistamine, whereas only nine (26%) were discharged with or given a prescription for an EpiPen, the study revealed.

“The variation in the management might reflect the under-recognition of the true incidence of tick bite anaphylaxis,” the authors stated.

Of the 70 species of tick in Australia, the paralysis tick, ixodes holocyclus, is the most widely known and endemic to the eastern coastline of

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