Laboratory Animal Bite Anaphylaxis: A National Survey

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Abstract

Objective:

This study documents previously unreported cases of laboratory animal bite anaphylaxis in animal laboratory facilities in the United States.

Methods:

An online survey was e-mailed to designated institutional officials at laboratory animal facilities identified by the National Institutes of Health Office of Laboratory Animal Welfare.

Results:

One hundred ninety eight organizations responded and 15 organizations indicated that workers had experienced anaphylaxis following an animal bite. Case report forms were completed by nine of these institutions for 14 cases, 13 for rodent bites, and one involving a needlestick from a horse. In half of the cases involving rodents, there was no prior history of animal allergy. All workers had uncomplicated recoveries. Treatment, testing, and work restrictions varied across cases.

Conclusions:

While uncommon, anaphylaxis from laboratory animal bites occurs more frequently than suggested by the literature.

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