This site is intended for healthcare professionals

Go to /sign-in page

You can view 5 more pages before signing in

antihistamines in anaphylactic shock

Last reviewed dd mmm yyyy. Last edited dd mmm yyyy

Authoring team

Antihistamines in anaphylactic shock

  • antihistamines are not recommended as part of the initial emergency treatment for anaphylaxis
  • antihistamines have no role in treating respiratory or cardiovascular symptoms of anaphylaxis
  • antihistamines can be used to treat skin symptoms that often occur as part of allergic reactions including anaphylaxis
    • their use must not delay treatment of respiratory or cardiovascular symptoms of anaphylaxis (using adrenaline and IV fluids)

Antihistamines can be helpful in alleviating cutaneous symptoms (whether these are due to anaphylaxis or non-anaphylaxis allergic reactions), but must not be given in preference to adrenaline to treat anaphylaxis. In the presence of ongoing Airway/Breathing/ Circulation problems of anaphylaxis, give further IM adrenaline and seek expert advice.

Once a patient has been stabilised, use a non-sedating oral antihistamine (e.g. cetirizine) in preference to chlorphenamine which causes sedation.



Create an account to add page annotations

Add information to this page that would be handy to have on hand during a consultation, such as a web address or phone number. This information will always be displayed when you visit this page

The content herein is provided for informational purposes and does not replace the need to apply professional clinical judgement when diagnosing or treating any medical condition. A licensed medical practitioner should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions.


Copyright 2024 Oxbridge Solutions Limited, a subsidiary of OmniaMed Communications Limited. All rights reserved. Any distribution or duplication of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited. Oxbridge Solutions receives funding from advertising but maintains editorial independence.