Penicillin allergy: a practical approach to assessment and prescribing

Guest posting:  Jason Trubiano, Antimicrobial Stewardship, Drug and Antibiotic Allergy Service and Centre for Antibiotic Allergy and
Research, Austin Health, Victoria, Australia. 

  • Penicillin allergies are not always lifelong. Approximately 50% are lost over five years.
  • A reaction to penicillin during a childhood infection is unlikely to be a true allergy.
  • Only 1–2% of patients with a confirmed penicillin allergy have an allergy to cephalosporins.
    In patients with a low risk of severe allergic reactions, cephalosporins are a relatively safe
    treatment option.
  • Patients with a history of delayed non-severe reactions, such as mild childhood rashes that
    occurred over 10 years ago, may be suitable for an oral rechallenge with low-dose penicillin. This
    should be done in a supervised hospital environment.
  • In many cases, with appropriate assessment and allergy testing, it may be possible to remove the
    penicillin allergy label

Reference

One comment

  1. Great blog article. Couldn’t be write much better!

    Like

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