If I Have Been Stung By A Bee And Had An Allergic Reaction, Am I At Risk Of Reacting Again?

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Question: If I have been stung by a bee and had an allergic reaction, am I at risk of reacting again?

Answer: If you've been stung by a bee and didn't have a reaction, there is still a chance of reacting in the future. You can get stung many times in your life and not react and one day become allergic to it. If you've actually had an allergic reaction to a sting there's a very high chance of reacting again. It really isn't a fluke. People think that because it never happened before, it probably won't happen again.

But once you become allergic and have a reaction, there's quite a high chance of it happening again. And it's really important to tell your doctor that you've had this reaction so the doctor can determine the right kind of test or treatment to prevent it from happening again.

The chance of it happening, of having another allergic reaction to a sting can be 30 percent in milder cases or 70 percent or more in severe cases. That's a pretty high chance of having another severe reaction and is the reason to really seek the best advice and preventative treatment. For example, if you've had a dangerous allergic reaction or one that could become dangerous, your doctor should consider prescribing an injector that would deliver a dose of epinephrine which is the only real antidote for an anaphylactic or systemic reaction to a sting. And the doctor should consider referring you to an allergist for testing and discussion of preventative treatment – immunization to build up a resistance so there will be almost no chance of having a reaction to a future sting.

Next: Do Allergy Shots Help With Treating Allergic Reactions To Bees Or Fire Ants?

Previous: How Are Stinging Insect Allergies Treated?

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