Causes and Symptoms

Published on Saturday, 23 June 2012 16:55


When fish is consumed the immune system mounts a response to an ingested protein. It then signals an attack on this protein by releasing histamine and other chemicals. These chemicals cause the allergic symptoms. There are several proteins in fish that can cause an allergic response; however, parvalbumin, a calcium-binding protein, is the most common allergen in fish.


 Usually occur within 2 hours of consumption, handling, or inhaling.

  • Hives and other skin irritations, eczema
  • Swelling of lips, eyes, face, tongue, throat
  • Mouth tingles or is itchy
  • Wheezing, difficulty breathing, runny nose, congestion
  • Stomach cramps, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea
  • Dizziness, lightheadedness
  • Anaphylaxis (can occur in some severe cases) Anaphylaxis is when the throat swells making breathing difficult because the airways constrict.  Other symptoms may include a rapid pulse, dizziness, shock, and lightheadedness.  This is life threatening and needs to be treated immediately by a clinician.