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Journal of Allergy
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 316296, 7 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/316296
Review Article

Managing Anxiety Related to Anaphylaxis in Childhood: A Systematic Review

Department of Psychiatry, The Hospital for Sick Children, University of Toronto, 555 University Avenue, Toronto, ON, Canada M5G 1X8

Received 26 April 2011; Accepted 8 August 2011

Academic Editor: John Bastian

Copyright © 2012 Katharina Manassis. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Objectives. This paper reviews the relationship between anxiety and anaphylaxis in children and youth, and principles for managing anxiety in the anaphylactic child and his or her parents. Methods. A review of the medical literature (Medline) was done using the keywords “anxiety,” “anaphylaxis,” and “allergy,” limited to children and adolescents. Findings were organized into categories used in the treatment of childhood anxiety disorders, then applied to managing anxiety in the anaphylactic child. Results. Twenty-four relevant papers were identified. These varied widely in methodology. Findings emphasized included the need to distinguish anxiety-related and organic symptoms, ameliorate the anxiety-related impact of anaphylaxis on quality of life, and address parental anxiety about the child. Conclusion. Children with anaphylaxis can function well despite anxiety, but the physical, cognitive, and behavioral aspects of anxiety associated with anaphylactic risk must be addressed, and parents must be involved in care in constructive ways.