Anaphylaxis and You

I won’t lie and say that I wasn’t nervous about taking the Keflex the Infectious Disease specialist prescribed. I was. I think everyone was, including the doctor. It’s only natural when you have multiple drug allergies1 to be cautious with this sort of thing. 

I started joking about how I was noticing red splotches pop up within a few hours every time I took it. I was, but gingers and anxiety patients can sometimes end up with rashes and hives for little or no reason. So I just kept an eye on them and tried not to worry. 

Until last night. 

Last night, about 60-120 minutes after taking the Keflex, I noticed my throat was itching and that I could actually feel my uvula. I thought that I was probably just being nutso. Even when I realized breathing was starting to get especially hard–and I’d used my rescue inhaler. Even when I noticed that my lips were slightly puffy last night. Even when all of those things lessened after using Benadryl. 

You know how people have suggested in the past that I might be a hypochondriac or have another sort of factitious disorder? I always understood that sort of thinking because I tend to think my problems are no big deal–if it’s “physical”, I think it’s in my head; if it’s “mental”, I think I’m just being ridiculous.2 

Anyway, I figured that maybe I really was nuts and that I should just ignore it. 

This morning I took the Keflex again. About the same length of time passed before I noticed the same symptoms popping up. This time I casually mentioned it to my mom.3 She didn’t take long to call the ID to find out what we should do. The doctor’s office called back. I was to immediately discontinue the Keflex. If the swelling got worse, I was to report to the ER. She was going to figure out what to do next. She apparently didn’t figure it out today. 

So, yay. I have now flummoxed an infectious disease specialist. I am a statistical anomaly in the medical profession.45 It’s so fun being a freak for the medical community. I just love being the person whose charts allow them to learn all about weird shit. I love how it leads to unnecessary tests and stress. It’s just so fun.6

Now I wait for an absolution that will never come.7 

  1. including two related to Keflex 

  2. Discounting one’s own suffering & health issues can actually be a sign of things like PTSD. 

  3. Imagine casually mentioning to another person that you were showing signs of anaphylaxis. 

  4. Even when allergic to other cephalosporins or penicillins, at least 90% of people can still take Keflex. Those who can’t aren’t usually allergic to most other antibiotics. 

  5. The rapid strep test & culture from last week coming back positive and negative is another example of my anomaly-ness. Of all the people who have inconsistent rapid test/throat culture results, only three in one study had results like mine. And there is no known reason why that sort of thing happened. 

  6. If you can’t detect the sarcasm, I’m sorry. 

  7. It’s a Titanic reference, dude. 

Published by

Janet Morris

I'm from Huntsville, Alabama. I've got as many college credits as a doctorate candidate, and the GPA of some of them, too. I have a boss by the name of Amy Pond. She's a dachshund. My parents both grew up in Alabama.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge