By Tiny Hearts Education

What Anaphylaxis Looks Like

Approximately 1 in 100 of all school-aged children will develop anaphylaxis.


In the past ten years, food-triggered anaphylaxis has doubled, and over the past 20 years, hospital admissions for anaphylaxis have increased by 400%. Despite death from anaphylaxis being relatively rare, Australia has one of the highest fatality rates to other developed countries around the world.

Below you'll hear from 4 different Mamas whose children experienced moderate to severe reactions and what they looked like.

Trigger: Sesame

This reaction happened to my son just days after his 1st birthday. I made him an avocado and hummus sandwich, and he reacted to the sesame (tahini) in the hummus. It was perhaps 1/2 teaspoon of hummus containing 17% tahini so as much sesame as maybe 3-4 seeds worth.


Initially, white hives appeared on his body, and I rang 000. By the time the ambulance arrived, he had no signs of the hives anymore and had totally clear skin minus a little scratching. We went to the hospital just for monitoring, and within an hour of being at the hospital, these hives appeared on his body, some as large as 50c coins, all from such a small amount of sesame

We did allergy testing, which resulted in a 9mm hive from the prick test, and it has been classed as a moderate reaction as it didn't affect his breathing. We have been lucky enough to avoid any other reactions as we have entirely removed sesame from home.


Trigger: Peanuts