Many People May Not Actually Be Allergic to Penicillin

Connecticut residents who have previously been diagnosed with a penicillin allergy may not have to still worry about having a negative reaction. This is especially true if the diagnosis was made when they were a child. It has been discovered that many people who believe they are allergic to penicillin have either outgrown the allergy or were misdiagnosed.

According to a study that was presented at the 2016 annual meeting of the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, numerous people who have been diagnosed with a penicillin allergy can actually tolerate the drug. In many cases, a child who is given penicillin will develop a side effect, such as a rash, and it will be assumed that it is due to an allergy. It is possible that upwards of 50 million people in the United States who believe they are allergic to penicillin actually aren’t.

When people are believed to be allergic to penicillin, they are sometimes prescribed other drugs that may have more significant side effects. However, there is a simple test that can determine if someone has been misdiagnosed or is no longer allergic, and the testing process only takes three hours.

A misdiagnosis of an antibiotic allergy is the type of medical mistake that can result in a great deal of harm. In addition to the issue of developing other side effects, the new drug that is prescribed instead may not be adequate to treat the infection that the patient has, resulting in a worsened medical condition. A lawyer could attempt to determine, with the assistance of medical experts, determine whether the error rose to the level of medical malpractice.