What Are the Most Common Shrimp Allergy Symptoms?

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  • Written By: Valerie Goldberg
  • Edited By: A. Joseph
  • Last Modified Date: 17 November 2019
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A shrimp allergy is a common type of shellfish allergy. People who suffer from shrimp allergies can have a multitude of symptoms when they consume shrimp. The most common shrimp allergy symptoms include facial swelling, itchy hives, nausea, dizziness and throat closure.

People who have had a bad reaction to shrimp might be allergic to shrimp alone or might have an allergy to all shellfish. Other types of shellfish include but are not limited to squid, lobster and clams. If an individual has felt sick after consuming shellfish, he or she should set up a doctor's appointment to find out more about a potential shellfish allergy.

Developing itchy hives is one of the most common shrimp allergy symptoms. If a person breaks out in hives after consuming shrimp, he or she should take an antihistamine medication as soon as possible. When a person's body comes into contact with an allergen, histamines are released and cause the body's cells to swell. An antihistamine medication works to block histamines and slow down this reaction. Drowsiness can be a major side effect of taking antihistamines.

Antihistamine medications can also benefit a person who is suffering from facial swelling because of a shellfish allergy. Histamines cause inflammation, which can be reduced by taking an antihistamine pill. Many antihistamine drugs are available over the counter at any pharmacy or grocery store.


A person who is suffering from other shrimp allergy symptoms including nausea and dizziness should take additional steps in getting better. If an individual feels dizzy, he or she should get to a safe place such as a couch or bed and lie down. A person should never attempt to drive while having a dizzy spell. Drinking flat ginger ale or cola can help reduce or stop the feeling of nausea.

One of the most dangerous shrimp allergy symptoms is throat closure, also called anaphylaxis. When a person who has just eaten shrimp is having trouble breathing, someone should take him or her to the emergency room immediately. An injection that can be given only by an emergency medical professional can save the life of a shrimp allergy victim who is suffering from airway constriction.

People who suffer from severe shellfish allergies should take extra care when eating in restaurants. Waiters need to be aware when a diner is allergic to shellfish. Some chefs might reuse a pan to cook another type of food after it has just been used to prepare shellfish for another patron. People who have shrimp allergies need their dinner prepared with freshly cleaned, uncontaminated tools.


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Discuss this Article

Post 3

Unlike food poisoning that can take several days to cause symptoms, food allergies often cause immediate side effects like those mentioned in this article as soon as someone eats them.

Since these allergy symptoms can occur quickly and lead to serious problems, anyone who feel extremely ill after eating shellfish should seek medical attention right away. Though shrimp allergy symptoms can be very uncomfortable, they can be reversed pretty quickly with medical attention.

Post 2

Many people who are allergic to other types of seafood are also allergic to shrimp. Anyone who has concerns about these allergy symptoms should discuss them with his or her doctor before eating any type of food that is the suspected cause.

Post 1

I have a friend who found out that she has an allergy to shrimp after eating it for the first time. One of her side effects was a bad headache that accompanied nausea, dizziness, and hives. I don't know if a headache is an allergy symptom of this type of food sensitivity, or just a coincidence that she had one, but anyone with a severe headache after eating shrimp should be concerned.

Regardless of the symptoms, anyone who feels sick after eating shrimp or any other type of food should seek medical attention as soon as possible. There are medications that can be given to ease these symptoms, and tests that can be done to get to the bottom of the cause of the symptoms.

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