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Allergy is the immune system anomalous reaction before substances that no not usually produce damage. This erroneous defence is an inflammatory process that can affect any part from the allergy person body, producing a great variety of diseases: Rhinitis, conjunctivitis, pure asthma, urticarial, dermatitis, anaphylaxis… allergy diseases have a hereditary factor and an environmental influence.


Cutaneous allergy

• Atopic dermatitis: It is a skin inflammatory disease with sproutings of variable length. Eczematous and disseminated pruritic injuries are produced. Commonly in childhood, in most cases, appear within the first few months of life. Besides the specific treatment it is basic to maintain a good hydration and skin sanitary measures.
• Allergic contact dermatitis: It is caused by the contact with an allergen to the skin. It can affect any part of the body: Head due to dyes or cosmetics, wrists or abdomen due to metals (baubles, buckles, etc.) The diagnosis is done by epicutaneous or skin testing.
• Urticaria and angioedema: Epidermis affectation with hives (papules, reddish, evanescent and whitening under pressure), and itching. In the angioedema there is a dermis affectation with swelling, more frequent in face (eyelid or lips).
• The acute urticarial (less than six weeks length) is usually associated to the allergic cause (allergic reaction to drugs, food, wasps’ or bee’s bites, parasites as Anisakis, etc.). The chronic urticaria, persisting more than six weeks, and it is not related to an allergic process. In approximately the 90% of cases there is not any clear cause; it is named idiopathic chronic urticaria.

Allergic conjunctivitis

• The characteristically symptoms of allergic conjunctivitis are: Stinging or itching, grittiness feeling, epiphora and reddish of both eyes. Affecting people allergic to allergens, which are airway transmitted (pollens, fungi, dust mites and pets), mostly along with nasal mucosa (rhinitis) and frequently of bronchial affectation (asthma).

Allergic rhinitis

• Allergic rhinitis is an inflammatory disease of the nasal mucosa caused by allergens, in general breathed in. Representative symptoms are: Nasal itching sneezes, watery mucous and nasal blocked nose. The most frequent allergens which cause allergic rhinitis are pollens, fungi, dust mites and pets (dogs and cats). It is habitual to go with conjunctivitis or allergic bronchial asthma.

Allergic asthma

• Asthma is a bronchial inflammatory disease. The typical symptoms are cough, difficulty breathing sensation, whistles and thoracic tightness. The allergic asthma or extrinsic occurs when the person is in direct contact with the allergen to which he is sensitized. Some crisis may come about caused directly by the physical exercise, by respiratory infections or irritating agents.

Food allergy

• Food is a growing origin of allergy, especially in childhood. The symptom may involve any part within the body, standing out cutaneous, digestive and respiratory symptoms.
• In our country, among children, the most related to allergy food are egged, milk and fish; among adults, fruits, nuts and seafood. There is a tight link between allergy to pollens in our environment. A popular symptom, particularly in pollen allergic people, is oral mucosa itching related to vegetable food as fruits. It is named “oral allergy syndrome” and in general, it is not related to other symptoms.

Drugs allergy

• The adverse reactions to medicines are defined as a “harmful effect or unexpected to appear after a drug administration dosage usually used in man to prevent, diagnose and/or treat a disease” Allergic reactions to drugs are unpredicted, and they are produced by an immunological mechanism. Any part of the body may be affected by symptoms.
• In our country, nonesteroidal anti-inflammatory and betalactam antibiotics are the most frequent drugs causing allergic reactions.

Insects allergy

• Reactions to bites may be local, with itching, reddish or edema in the bitten area by the insect. Although they are not serious, some people have larger reactions than several days length.
• In some cases general or systematic reactions affecting skin and other organs are produced (rhinitis, asthma, sickness with loss of consciousness…). These reactions are more frequently produced by the hymenopteran (bees and wasps) insects.


Insects allergy

• Skin tests: there are several types of test to be performed in skin (prick-test, intradermoreaction, epicutaneous, ice lump test, pressure test…), depending on the patient’s symptoms and type of the suspected immunologic mechanism.
• Laboratory tests: spirometry, bronchodilating test, peak-flow, O2 saturation… show the lungs function state.
• Respiratory function tests: Spirometry, bronchododilating test, peak-flow measure, O2 saturation…
• Exposure test: The key diagnostic test in allergology. It is to establish contact between the person and the substance which presumably produces allergy, in order to check or discard its allergy. They are done in diagnosis doubtful cases or to control the end of allergic disease.

Specific treatments

Apart from the drug use to control symptoms, as other specialities, there are specific treatments in some allergic diseases.
• Immunotherapy: it is used in allergic patients to hymenopteran (bees and wasps), in respiratory allergy and in some food allergy cases. Rest on the extracts administration (allergenic vaccines) with the aim to modify the allergic person’s immunological response to stop being it. These are treatments enlarged expanded during several years.
• Induction to food tolerance: Carried out with some food, as milk or eggs, in allergic patients to it. It makes possible that the patient tolerates a regular feed intake, decreasing the risk to present serious reactions with accidental intakes. The tolerance is maintained whenever the patient keeps taking the food continuously.
• Desensibilización a medicamentos: It is to produce a temporal tolerance situation for an allergic patient affected by this drug, while he is always taking this drug ceaselessly. It is used when the usage of the medicine is essential, due to the lack of alternative therapies or because the options are less efficient or for causing adverse effects.