Essay Sample on Pathopharmacology

Published: 2023-01-23
Essay Sample on Pathopharmacology
Type of paper:  Case study
Categories:  Pharmacology Healthcare Drug
Pages: 4
Wordcount: 969 words
9 min read

Latex is a material that is commonly used in the production of items such as gloves. Some people may develop an allergy to this substance. From the case study, it is evident that Jolene is suffering from an allergy of latex. Latex allergy comes as a result of the body's immune system producing antibodies to fight a foreign substance that it detects and as a result, an individual may experience itching. (Niggemann, & Beyer, 2014). When Jolene comes into contact with latex, which is a harmless substance, her body's immune system overreacts to latex, causing her the symptoms of itchiness. Several elements can cause an allergic reaction to an individual. It is therefore critical to know that no matter how harmless the allergen is, a severe and sometimes life-threatening condition occurs.

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How does an Allergic Reaction Occur?

The human body has its natural way of defending itself from infections as well as reacting to foreign substances that comes into contact with the human body. The immune system is composed of cells as well as physical barriers such as the skin. In the event of the body coming into contact with an allergen, it is the immune cells that then to overreact in the attempt of destroying the substance. (Johansson, 2013). It all starts with the foreign body being detected by the body where the defense system is alerted, and there is chemical communication among the immune cell, which is facilitated by cytokines. After the production of the cytokines, the immune cells, the B cells, also known as macrophages, are produced. The macrophages engulf the substance in an attempt to clear it through phagocytosis where the fragments of the allergen, therefore, bind to the T cells that are allergen-specific.

During the above process, there is the induction of the allergen reactive T cells which are primarily the Th2 form which secrete the cytokines, which are the chemical mediators that alert the immune cells. (Johansson, 2013). It is imminent to know that there is a difference between the normal bacterial or viral infections reactions where the type of T cells produced are of the Th1 form. After the Th2 type cytokines are induced, the B cells get instructions that allow them to change from Immunoglobulin M (IgM) into immunoglobulin E (IgE) antibodies. (Johansson, 2013). The IgE is critical in the activation of an allergic reaction. The IgE are therefore taken by the mast cells and basophils which have a significantly high affinity for the IgE where they are circulated all over the body. As the immune system starts a confrontation with the allergen, chemical mediators such as histamine and prostaglandins are produced. (Johansson, 2013). The production of the mediators is responsible for the beginning of the clinical signs. It, therefore, means that when Jolene comes into contact with latex, the B immune cells are produced. They, thus, convert into IgE, which triggers the production of prostaglandins and histamine, and that is when she starts experiencing the itching. (Johansson, 2013).

Clinical Manifestations of an Allergic Reaction

Allergic reactions may present various signs depending on an individual. These reactions may range from mild to severe. Severe allergic reactions are life-threatening as they may lead to anaphylactic shock. (Niggemann, & Beyer, 2014). As per Jolene's responses, I would classify hers as soft because she only presents with itching in the hands when she comes into contact with latex products. Other mild manifestations may include sneezing, runny nose, itching, cough, and sneezing. On the other hand, the severe expression of allergic may include vomiting, wheezing, dizziness, unconsciousness, hives, nausea and confusion. It is therefore essential to treat any allergic reactions as they may lead to anaphylactic shock as well as discomfort.

Pharmacotherapy for Allergic Reactions

The first line of pharmacotherapy for allergic reactions is antihistamine medications. Studies indicate that the properties of antihistamines have a link to their ability in antagonizing H1 receptor sites. Researchers have also found out that the late phase follows the first-hand allergic response to treatment. (Ward, & Greenhawt, 2015).

Antihistamines are the drugs of choice for treating allergies of whatever kind. They suppress the production of mediators like the histamine and prostaglandins that are produced by the mast cells and which are responsible for the manifestations of allergic reactions such as those named above. For the case of Jolene, antihistamines would work best for her in reducing and suppressing the production of histamine from her immune cells whenever she puts on the latex gloves. (Ward, & Greenhawt, 2015). This will go a long way to prevent and ease the itchiness in her hands, and she can be able to use latex products. The antihistamines are readily available, and Jolene can be able to afford them with or without a prescription from the doctor. The medications are in various formulations ranging from tablets to creams as well as syrups. These medications, however, may lead to other side effects, and it is therefore vital to be aware of them. They may include dryness of the mouth, retention of urine, constipation and dizziness. (Ward, & Greenhawt, 2015).

There are several other pharmacological methods of managing allergies that Jolene can use effectively. Epinephrine can also be used to control allergic reactions. Epinephrine is, however, best used to manage life-threatening symptoms of allergic reactions. (Ward, & Greenhawt, 2015). Additionally, I would advise Jolene to keep off contact with latex products as they are the primary source of the allergens that cause her reactions.


Johansson, S. (2013). Molecular and biological aspects of the acute allergic reaction (Vol. 33). Springer Science & Business Media.

Niggemann, B., & Beyer, K. (2014). Factors augmenting allergic reactions. Allergy, 69(12), 1582-1587.

Ward, C. E., & Greenhawt, M. J. (2015). Treatment of allergic reactions and quality of life among caregivers of food-allergic children. Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, 114(4), 312-318.

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