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Allergy is a disorder of the immune system in which the defenses respond inappropriately and they identify external substances as harmful that, due to their nature, are inoffensive. The most frequent allergy is respiratory - rhinoconjunctivitis and allergic asthma- which affects around 25% of the general population.
Professionals and patients explain how you live with the disease
There are many factors, many causes that may explain why there are increasingly more and more allergic diseases, such as environmental contamination, the type of diet, stress factors that act on the immune system, the microbiome itself, these multiple microorganisms that live in our body.
Allergy is a disorder of the immune system in which the defenses respond inappropriately and they identify external substances as harmful that, due to their nature, are inoffensive.
The person with an allergy develops defenses (immunoglobulins) to certain substances, called allergens, to which they are exposed. The allergens can be substances or particles that they inhale (mites, pollens, animal skin flakes, etc.), foods, drugs, insect venom, contact elements (metals, perfumes, cosmetics, gums, etc.).
The clinical characteristics of the allergic disease differ as regards the type of hypersensitivity mechanism involved in the allergic response:
Immediate hypersensitivity or IgE mediated. When specific IgE immunoglobulins are involved in the immune response. They are usually reactions that appear quickly after contact with the allergen (less than an hour).
Delayed-type hypersensitivity. When the defences involved are the lymphocytes or white cells.
What are immunoglobulins?
The specific antibodies or immunoglobulins are glycoproteins that circulate in the blood to combat and eliminate bacteria, parasites, or viruses (antigens) with the aim of preventing an infection. There are several types of immunoglobulins (IgA, IgG, IgE, IgD, IgM). Each immunoglobulin is unique and specific for each type of antigen. The E specific immunoglobulins that participate in the allergic reactions recognize substances as antigens that, due to their nature, should not be so (dietary proteins, skin flakes, pollens,…), as it is an anomalous response of the immune system.
Joan Bartra TomàsAllergistPneumology and Allergy Department
Rosa Maria Muñoz CanoAllergistPneumology and Allergy Department
Published: 24 July 2019
Updated: 24 July 2019
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