Shellfish allergy symptoms generally develop within minutes to an hour of eating shellfish. They may include:
- Hives, itching or eczema (atopic dermatitis)
- Swelling of the lips, face, tongue and throat, or other parts of the body
- Wheezing, nasal congestion or trouble breathing
- Abdominal pain, diarrhea, nausea or vomiting
- Dizziness, lightheadedness or fainting
- Tingling in the mouth
Allergies can cause a severe, potentially life-threatening reaction known as anaphylaxis. An anaphylactic reaction to shellfish or anything else is a medical emergency that requires treatment with an epinephrine (adrenaline) injection and a trip to the emergency room.
Signs and symptoms of anaphylaxis include:
- A swollen throat or a lump in your throat (airway constriction) that makes it difficult for you to breathe
- Shock, with a severe drop in your blood pressure
- Rapid pulse
- Dizziness, lightheadedness or loss of consciousness
When to see a doctor
See a doctor or allergy specialist if you have food allergy symptoms shortly after eating. Seek emergency treatment if you develop signs or symptoms of anaphylaxis.