Message Number: SG7618 | New FHL Archives Search
From: Sandra Fox
Date: 2004-01-28 20:01:53 UTC
Subject: Re: [ferrethealth] vasodilatory shock
Message-Id: <>

BTW, how would one categorize anaphylactic shock? It seems to have compone=
nts of both vasodilatory shock and hypovolemic (low blood volume) shock.

Anaphylactic shock is actually a result of a histamine reaction which resul=
ts in a distributive shock. Exposure to an allergen causes the body to rel=
ease antigens to the offending substance. With anaphylaxis this is an extr=
emely strong response, sending an overabundance of antigens. The mast cell=
s and basophils that are sent to fight the subtance rupture and release a l=
arge number of chemicals (including histamine, heparin, platelet-activating=
factors, etc.). These chemicals cause the vessels to become more permeabl=
e, cause bronchoconstriction, constrict the coronary arteries and causing t=
he more familiar hives on the skin. If not treated, heart function is redu=
ced, inflammation increases, mucus production increases and peripheral bloo=
d vessels dialate. This vasodilation increases the amount of fluid leaking=
into the surrounding tissues. As the fluid in the blood vessels is lost t=
o tissue, the blood volume decreases, leading to decreased blood circultati=
ng back to the heart and, therefore, reduces the cardiac output. Less outp=
ut means less perfusion of organs and extremeties. The decreased oxygenati=
on of what blood is left due to the bronchoconstriction and mucus productio=
n is evidenced by the difficulty breathing. If not treated quickly death =
can occur in minutes to hours. I know this was long, but it is a bit can b=
e a bit complicated. Hope it answers that part of your question.