Sept. 13, 2022

A nut allergy nightmare at 35,000 feet

"People developing anaphylaxis will not always have five extra minutes to spare. I do appreciate that auto-injectors are expensive, but it is not at all expensive to have an ampule or vial of epinephrine on board, which can be drawn up in five...


"People developing anaphylaxis will not always have five extra minutes to spare. I do appreciate that auto-injectors are expensive, but it is not at all expensive to have an ampule or vial of epinephrine on board, which can be drawn up in five seconds. Those also come in a much friendlier concentration of 1 mg/1 mL.

The chances of using epinephrine to treat a cardiac arrest patient are astronomically small compared to the chances of needing it to arrest an anaphylactic reaction, particularly if they continue to serve food containing nut products.

Parents in the nut allergy community have advocated for these changes for years. And while the airlines have taken the important step of no longer serving packets of nuts on board, little else has been done to make air travel safer for the food-allergy community. I call upon the major airlines to revise their medical kits and to offer allergy-safe meals for those in need. It is such a simple measure, and you can quite literally save a life."

Samara Friedman is a pediatric orthopedic surgeon.

She shares her story and discusses her KevinMD article, "A nut allergy nightmare at 35,000 feet."

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