Deaths Induced by Drug Allergies: Assessing Global Trends

For one study, researchers sought to improve prevention initiatives and reduce unnecessary deaths from drug anaphylaxis (DAF), to identify trends and key concerns through systematic review.

The estimated DAF rate was 0.13 to 0.53/106 people per year. FAD prevalence is generally increasing globally over time, with healthcare facilities accounting for 62% of cases with a comparable gender distribution and a mean age of 53 years. The substances most often mentioned in these cases were NSAIDs, radiocontrast agents, anesthetics, and antibiotics. The 3 main comorbidities were asthma, cardiovascular diseases and a personal history of drug allergies. Cardiovascular and respiratory problems were the main symptoms. Only 29% of publications mention the use of adrenaline.

The prevalence of FAD was increasing worldwide and most cases were iatrogenic. In order to avoid unnecessary deaths, the first comprehensive evaluation of the DAF revealed significant shortcomings. Patients over 54 years of age with a personal history of drug allergy or hypersensitivity with minimal or insufficient allergy workup, cardiovascular disease and/or asthma requiring frequent hospitalization and/or medical assistance were considered having the DAF phenotype. There was an increased risk for those requiring regular intravenous antibiotic therapy and/or undergoing surgery or image-guided radiocontrast procedures.


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