Had a scary morning....

  1. I had surgery yesterday and the MD started me on Levaquin. It was an outpatient and I didn't get home till late last night. I decided not to take my abx until this morning since that had given it to me pre-op. I am extremely sensitive to most medications, especially abx. I took my Levaquin 250mg this am and about 20 minutes later, my tongue started to tingle. The next thing I know my lips and tongue are starting to go numb and swell up and my face and chest are bright red. I'm thinking OMG, this is anaphylaxis. So I down 50mg of Benadryl and call the MD. He said I really didn't need the abx anyway and don't take them.

    Just wanted to vent to some fellow nurses. I've never seen this happen in a patient before so I am not familiar with these kinds of reactions.

    Thanks for listening y'all.

  2. Visit Heather333 profile page

    About Heather333

    Joined: Mar '01; Posts: 999; Likes: 2


  3. by   baseline
    Don't take any more Quinolones ( Tequin,Floxin,Levaquin,Cipro, Avelox). You had an allergic reaction by your reported symptoms.
  4. by   bagladyrn
    Please - if you ever have a similar reaction to anything again - esp. throat/tongue swelling, don't call MD - call 911! I had a similar reaction and went into a full arrest from p.o. abx.. (Wasn't scary to me while happening, but in retrospect -whew!)
  5. by   Jenny P
    There are different type of allergic reactions and you have had a fairly severe one. Mild allergic reactions involve skin (flushing, rashes, etc.); then the mucous membranes are next type; then the respiratory symptoms; then circulatory collapse.

  6. by   Ted
    Originally posted by Jenny P


  7. by   dianah
    YES, agree w/bagladyrn and baseline!! Anaphylaxis can happen SOOO fast, you gotta jump on it stat!! I administer and monitor contrast injections for CTs and IVPs. Since we changed to exclusive use of non-ionic contrast media (it STILL HAS IODINE, tho'!!) at our facility, we have had a drastic reduction in serious contrast reactions and side effects. However, I still warn nurses about HOW FAST anaphylaxis can happen AND that it can happen ANY TIME, when you least expect it. I injected a man a few years ago who'd had several previous CTs w/iodine -- this was his 7th one -- and he developed a reaction to the contrast! No medication is benign; expect the unexpected and be prepared, either for yourself or family or pts.
    Glad you're getting over the reaction, hope you mend quickly from your procedure. Best, -- (stepping off soapbox to allow another to step up . . .) --- D
  8. by   Youda
    Just a reminder: each subsequent exposure will give you more severe symptoms! So glad that you had some Benadryl on hand. You might also want to call the doctor's office and tell the nurse to be sure to put it on your chart the allergy, so it won't get prescribed to you again. Thank goodness you're all right!
  9. by   donmurray
    Maybe you should have your probable allergic reaction tested first, before excluding a group of potentially life saving drugs from your medicine chest.
  10. by   Heather333
    Thanks guys. Feeling better now, just a little sore from the surgery. Definitely won't be taking Quinolones anymore. Going to see the MD tomorrow and talk it over with him.

  11. by   nursegoodguy
    Wow! I too would avoid it in the future!
    Now I have a question...
    Several years ago... I had a...? I don't exactly know what it was? I had gotten a shot of pcn in one buttock, no problem, then when the nurse stuck the needle in for the other one I felt this heat from the insertion site go right up my spine and to my head! As soon as it hit my head I was seeing bright flashing lights and felt like I was having trouble breathing, couldn't control my body, felt limp, my speech was garbled... Finally it started to wear off after about 20 minutes. What happened?
    Did she hit a nerve or was it a reaction?
    She said, "oh you just passed out"... I don't think so?
  12. by   2MagnoliaTrees
    Thank God you were able to get the Benedryl down. God Bless and hope this never happens again.
  13. by   deespoohbear
    Glad to hear that you are okay. That is scary! Never had it happen myself, but have treated 3 patients with severe reactions to antibiotics or IV contrast. Scary as hell. The one time I got called to the CT scanner STAT (I was the house supervisor for that shift). I went to the scanner and there was a lady having an allergic reaction to the contrast...c/o tongue swelling up, tingling, couldn't breathe...I open the emergency drug kit and called the ER doc STAT. Got her some benadryl on board and some epi and took her to ER. She was okay, but I told her to have it tattooed across her chest and forehead: Allergy to IV contrast.

    I sure would avoid that class of drugs like the plague in the future....
  14. by   SmilingBluEyes
    you should perhaps ask about having an EPI pen around? I am glad you are ok now...your story made my hair stand on end. Not something to play with, as you know! hope you heal well and completely!