Iodine, relatively a rare element is primarily utilized by our body to produce hormones such as thyroxin by the thyroid glands. However in rare cases, few people can have iodine allergy.
Iodine is found in sea food especially shellfish, shrimps and other fishes. Those who are allergic to shellfish and other sea food might have iodine allergy.
Iodine Allergy Symptoms
- A person having iodine allergy may suffer from thyroid disease. This is because he will not be able to take the needed iodine for the production of thyroid hormones. The symptoms of shortage of thyroid hormones can be constipation, weight gain, tiredness, palpitation and confusion.
- Swelling of lips, tongue, eyes, and throat after eating iodine containing food such as shrimps and shellfish.
- Hives and rash which are itchy and burning.
- Local irritation from contact with tincture of iodine with the skin giving rise to contact dermatitis.
- Diarrhea, vomiting, nausea and abdominal cramps gastrointestinal symptoms of iodine allergy.
- Cough and asthma with running nose respiratory symptoms of iodine allergy.
- Anaphylaxis reaction with contrast agents used in MRI and CT scan and other advanced X-ray techniques.
Iodine allergy is an immunological response by the cell mediated IgE antibody for the protein present in iodine. The release of histamine substance gives rise to above symptoms of iodine allergy.
Symptoms of iodine toxicity
Toxicity of iodine is a non immunological response to elemental iodine by direct contact with skin, causing tissue damage as in case of tincture of iodine and lugol’s iodine while cleaning for antisepsis purpose for a prolonged time.
- Skin rash.
- Skin burns.
- Burning of eye and irritation of mucus membrane caused by iodine vapor.
- Abnormal growth of thyroid gland.
Iodine allergy test: scratch test, intra-dermal or patch test. It is done by an allergist to confirm iodine allergy.
Home Remedies For Allergic Reactions
Home remedy for iodine allergy symptoms
- Local irritation with tincture of iodine resulting in skin rash and itching can be controlled by applying witch hazel, especially without alcohol.
- Carrot juice, rich in vitamin A also helps to relieve the skin condition.
- Quercetin prevents release of histamine; it also stops the production of leukotrienes.
- Juice of plantain leaves when applied to the allergic skin area relieves itching and reduces inflammation.
Treatment Iodine Allergy Symptoms
- Physician may prescribe oral anti histamines for skin rash, itching and hives.
- Bronchodilator is prescribed by physicians in case of cough, wheezing and asthma.
- Avoid using iodine ointments on open cuts and wounds.
- Avoid food containing iodine.