Crustacean Allergy


Belonging to arthropod family, crustacean is among most commonly used sea foods. Divided into six sub groups, it contains more than 44000 species that are used extensively or less extensively. Crab, crayfish and lobster are among those Crustacean family members that are more likely to be eaten by the human beings. Crustacean allergy can cause wide range of problems. From itching and swelling of lips, mouth, throat and tongue, the crustacean allergy can cause problem up to difficulty in breathing, dropping of blood pressure and even death.

Symptoms are generally observed when sea food is ingested in large quantity or it is handled in raw form. In the countries have shellfish as an industry, workers may have problems regarding crustacean allergy in every stage of processing. Crustacean allergy is a major health concern in those countries. The issue of cross reactivity is also reported to be witnessed among the crustacean allergy struck people. Cross reactivity encircles the fact that a person having a problem with one kind of seafood may also encountered problem with other sort of fish. Seventy five percent people are reported to have cross reactivity problems. Children as well as adults are reports to have problems related to Crustacean allergy. 1 % of total population of the world is estimated to have crustacean allergy.


In Europe, Scandinavian countries consume more Crustaceans and their population is reported to have a lot of related problems. In order to diagnose the problem of crustacean allergy, along with detailed patient history to laboratory tests of skin are used. Food challenges are the most impressive way to diagnose the crustacean allergy problems and this task is usually preformed by highly trained personnel’s in the hospitals. Patients that are having problems in the recent history are not challenged. Tests of cross reactivity can also be performed in the hospitals. People having problems related to crustacean allergy should develop a habit of studying the labels of food ingredients, so that they can avoid food items having crustacean and crustacean residues.

Crustacean is also used in some creams, therefore use of those creams should also be avoided as they can also create problem. Avoidance of crustacean is the only cure for the people having problems related to crustacean. Keeping in view that sea food allergy is not rare; one should take care of one’s eating patterns. Avoidance from crustacean is the only cure of the problem. Crustacean allergy doesn’t have any relationship with heredity factor. A child having this problem may have parents with no such symptoms.

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