Can't connect right now! retry
Wednesday Feb 19 2020
Web Desk

What is soybean dust and how does it cause allergy?

Web Desk
File photo

Soybean dust is generally caused by unloading of soybean grains in bulk and can potentially trigger respiratory and other problems in people, particularly those who have pre-existing health conditions or exhibit sensitivity.

According to a study under US National Center for Biotechnology Information, the major allergen is found in all parts of the plant, but is highly concentrated in hulls and pods.

Soybean is also a food allergen as it can cause Type 1 allergy (IgE-mediated) by simple oral ingestion, but it is also an aeroallergen due to its dust. An aeroallergen is a substance in the air such as a chemical, particle, pollen, spores, non-biological airborne particle which can trigger allergy.

Meanwhile, Type 1 allergy, commonly known as immediate hypersensitivity, is caused by re-exposure to a specific kind of allergen.

The common symptoms of allergy include breaking out on skin, hives, respiratory issues and in worst cases can lead to Anaphylaxis, which can be fatal.

Related: Unloading of soybean halted at Karachi port over fears of fatal dust

Anaphylaxis is the most extreme form of allergic reaction, which shows symptoms such as dry throat, swelling, shortness of breath, low blood pressure and dizziness etc. The allergic reaction, which can span from minutes to hours, can prove potentially fatal.

The immune system releases histamine upon coming in contact with the allergen and the primary allergic responses include runny nose, irritation in throat, eyes, nausea, abdominal pain, and shortness of breath.

The symptoms can be exacerbated by pre-existing health conditions such as asthma and history of allergic rhinitis.

A common way to find out whether it was an allergic reaction is to perform a blood test, which can reveal the amount of a certain kind of antibodies in the blood.

Over the counter anti-histamines and anti-allergy medications can prove useful at an earlier stage, however, a doctor should be immediately approached in case of severe symptoms.