What is Sulfa Allergy – Symptoms and Treatment

Drug allergies are not too uncommon these days. One antibiotic allergy is sulfa allergy which should not be confused with Sulpher allergy as both are different. However, Sulfa allergy is quite rare, and therefore, not too many people are aware about its causes, symptoms, or treatments. Below given information will help you to know more about this specific allergy:

sulfa allergy symptoms and treatment

What is Sulfa Allergy?

Sulfa allergy is a type of allergy that occurs when Sulfa in the antibiotic enters the bloodstream in humans to overreact. Sulfonamide antibiotics are mostly known to cause a reaction leading to this allergy. Antibiotics that have chemicals called sulfonamides also triggers a reaction if you are suffering from sulfa allergy. The manifestation of the allergy can be different in different people. The symptoms of this allergy are as follow:

Symptoms of Sulfa Allergy

  • Skin problems- It can make one’s skin too sensitive when it comes in contact with the sunlight. Also, there can be rashes on the skin that may be localized or might have spread over the entire body. Eczema is also one of the symptoms of this allergy.
  • Joint pain- Another symptom of sulfa allergy is pain in the joints. This occurs within a week of taking the medicines.
  • Muscle pain- Pain in the muscles is also a symptom of sulfa allergy that can be felt within one or two weeks of taking the medicine.
  • Swelling in the lymph nodes – As a result of sulfa intolerance, the lymph nodes can also experience swelling.

Treatment for Sulfa Drug Allergy

Discontinue the Medicine

Firstly, once you know the medicine that is causing such allergic reactions in your body, you need to discontinue it, so that the reaction stops at once. You may ask your doctor to replace the medicine.

Medical Treatment

Remember, the treatment will vary according to the nature and extents of the condition. For example if you are affected mildly by the allergy, there are certain supportive remedies, like, taking cool shower and using tropical medicine on the affected area. But if you are diagnosed as having anaphylactic symptoms, then it is very important that you should consult the doctor immediately, because if neglected this can even turn out to be fatal.

Beware While using Medicines

When you buy medicine from a pharmacy over the counter make sure to tell the pharmacist about your allergy and while buying a generic medicine make sure that it does not contain Sulfa. Remember, sulfa allergy can be caused by other drugs than antibiotics. You must know the drugs that can lead to this allergy.

Foods to Avoid

If you have sulfa allergic reaction, you also need to avoid certain foods, as they might have sulfa. Some of the foods of this category are celery, radish, jam, eggs, turnip, jelly, garlic, pickled onions, dehydrated potatoes, canned foods, dandelion, sauces and gravies, pizza etc.

The allergy is not too common an occurrence, but if someone is suffering from it, it should not be neglected.

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