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Dallas Food Allergy Litigation

A food allergy is a medical condition in which the body’s immune system mistakenly identifies a specific food or a substance in food as harmful. This triggers an immune response, leading to various symptoms that can range from mild to severe.

What Happens in a Food Allergy Reaction?

If someone has a food allergy and they consume the allergenic food, their body undergoes an immune response that can range from mild to severe.

Immediate Immune Response

  1. Recognition: The immune system mistakenly identifies a specific protein in the food as harmful.
  2. Antibody Production: The body produces antibodies called immunoglobulin E (IgE) against this protein.
  3. Chemical Release: Upon subsequent exposure, these antibodies trigger the release of chemicals like histamine from immune cells.

Symptoms

The release of these chemicals can cause a variety of symptoms, which can occur within minutes to a few hours after consuming the allergen:

Mild to Moderate Symptoms

  • Skin Reactions: Hives, itching, or eczema.
  • Respiratory Symptoms: Nasal congestion, sneezing, or coughing.
  • Gastrointestinal Symptoms: Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or abdominal pain.
  • Oral Symptoms: Itching or tingling in the mouth and throat.

Severe Symptoms (Anaphylaxis)

Anaphylaxis is a life-threatening reaction that requires immediate medical attention. Symptoms include:

  • Airway Constriction: Swelling of the throat and tongue, causing difficulty breathing.
  • Severe Drop in Blood Pressure: Leading to dizziness, lightheadedness, or loss of consciousness.
  • Rapid or Weak Pulse: Indicating cardiovascular distress.
  • Shock: A severe and potentially fatal drop in blood pressure.

Management of Food Allergies

  • Avoidance: The best way to prevent reactions is to avoid the allergenic food entirely.
  • Medication: Antihistamines can treat mild symptoms, but severe reactions require an epinephrine auto-injector (e.g., EpiPen).
  • Emergency Response: For anaphylaxis, administer epinephrine immediately and call emergency services. Further medical treatment may include oxygen, intravenous fluids, and additional medications.

Additional Considerations

  • Cross-Contact: Foods can become contaminated with allergens through cross-contact during processing or preparation.
  • Label Reading: Individuals with food allergies must read food labels carefully to avoid allergens. Labels often indicate common allergens in bold or within a “contains” statement.
  • Hidden Ingredients: Allergens can be hidden in various foods, including sauces, dressings, and baked goods, making it important to ask about ingredients when eating out or buying prepared foods.
  • Restaurant Communication: When dining out, it is essential to communicate clearly with restaurant staff about food allergies. Ensure that the staff understands the severity of the allergy and can accommodate specific dietary needs to prevent accidental exposure.
  • Cooking at Home: Preparing food at home can help control ingredients and reduce the risk of allergen exposure. To prevent cross-contact, use separate utensils and cookware for allergenic and non-allergenic foods.
  • Emergency Plan: Have a clear emergency plan in place. Ensure that family, friends, and coworkers know how to recognize symptoms of an allergic reaction and how to administer an epinephrine auto-injector if necessary.

Dallas Food Allergy Statistics

The CDC shared data from the National Health Interview Surveys conducted in 2021. The Diagnosed Allergic Conditions in Children Aged 0–17 Years: United States, 2021 report stated that 5.8% of children in the United States had a food allergy. Food allergy claims for Texas between 2009 and 2016 show that 53% of those claims were for someone under 18.

In May 2024, the FDA released a recall statement regarding an undeclared allergy. Texas Pecan, based in Dallas, TX, had to recall 8 oz and 16 oz products that may have contained undisclosed dairy, sesame, wheat, tree nuts, and peanuts, among other ingredients.

We Can Help

If you or a loved one have been affected by food allergies due to someone else’s actions, you shouldn’t have to face this burden alone. Food allergies can lead to severe health issues, significant emotional distress, and considerable financial strain. The impact on your daily life and well-being can be profound, but you don’t have to navigate this challenging situation without support.

Contact The Lange Law Firm at (833) 330-3663 or message us online for a free consultation. Our compassionate and experienced legal team is here to listen to your story and understand the full extent of your suffering. We are committed to thoroughly investigating your case, identifying those responsible, and gathering the necessary evidence to build a robust claim on your behalf. Our goal is to help you secure the compensation you deserve for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and any other damages you have endured.

At The Lange Law Firm, we believe in fighting for justice and holding negligent parties accountable. Let us provide the legal expertise and support you need to move forward with confidence and reclaim control of your life.