043 – Anaphylaxis discussion part 1 with Chong

Hi everyone!

Better late than never. This week Chong and I have finally got around to our discussion on anaphylaxis.

What are the common causes of anaphylaxis?
How is the severity of anaphylaxis graded?
How / when should we administer adrenaline and what are the pitfalls of this drug which has a  narrow therapeutic window?

We focus mainly on discussing the common causes in hospital and particularly the peri-operative setting. Peri-operative anaphylaxis is now the leading cause of direct anaesthetic related death in Australia / NZ.

We do offer a few quick thoughts on the common causes and management of anaphylaxis in the community (how many of you have been asked to help manage these reactions for example on a plane at a school or community event – where invariably someone says get so and so they’re a doctor / nurse!). If you haven’t I suspect it will only be a matter of time before someone ingests a peanut on a flight you’re on! Do you know how to use an epi-pen? They are pretty straight forward but nice to know what to do without having to read the instructions on the device mid flight when it’s handed to you by a flight attendant!

A big shout out to the ANZAAG special interest group at ANZCA who have put together an amazing online learning package and who are the true experts in the area of peri-operative anaphylaxis management. I strongly recommend those listeners who are members of the anaesthesia community log onto to the ANZCA networks website and complete this online learning package which also satisfies the CPD emergency response requirement for members of the ANZCA college.


NAP6 – UK national audit project on perioperative anaphylaxis examining over 3 million anaesthetics.

ANZAAG – Australia and NZ Anaesthetic Allergy Testing Group

Online Courses:

For members of ANZCA:

  • We highly recommend that you complete this perioperative anaphylaxis online course  available through the ANZCA Networks site: https://networks.anzca.edu.au

Health Professionals in general:

Members of the general public:


How to use an Epipen properly ! – fast forward to 3:30 to see the injection technique.



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