Comparison of recent anaphylaxis diagnostic criteria in real life: Can more patients be diagnosed as having anaphylaxis?

YEĞİT O. O., ASLAN A. F., Coşkun R., KARADAĞ P., TOPRAK İ. D., Can A., ...More

World Allergy Organization Journal, vol.16, no.8, 2023 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 16 Issue: 8
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.waojou.2023.100810
  • Journal Name: World Allergy Organization Journal
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, Food Science & Technology Abstracts, Directory of Open Access Journals
  • Keywords: Anaphylaxis, Diagnostic criteria, Risk factors, Severe anaphylaxis
  • Istanbul University Affiliated: Yes


Introduction: In 2020, World Allergy Organization (WAO) updated their diagnostic criteria for anaphylaxis, which differed as a result from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases/Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network (NIAID/FAAN) criteria which were still used in the 2021 update of the European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology (EAACI) anaphylaxis guideline. Our aim was to evaluate and to compare both diagnostic criteria and attempt to identify factors affecting severity of anaphylaxis. Methods: The medical records of the patients who were evaluated with suspected anaphylaxis at 3 medical centers in Türkiye between 2014 and 2021, and underwent a detailed diagnostic work-up, were analyzed retrospectively. Diagnosis of anaphylaxis was evaluated based on the WAO 2020 and EAACI 2021 and NIAID/FAAN diagnostic criteria. The severity of anaphylaxis was determined according to the WAO systemic allergic reaction grading system. Grade 5 anaphylaxis was defined as having respiratory failure, collapse/hypotension, loss of consciousness. Patients’ demographic and clinical characteristics were further analyzed depending on the severity of the reaction. Results: One thousand and six patients were evaluated and 232 patients without a convincing diagnosis of anaphylaxis were excluded from the study. The remaining 774 patients (70.6% female, median [Inter quartile range (IQR) 25–75] age: 42 [33–52]) were included for further examination. Anaphylaxis was diagnosed in 729 (94.2%) patients meeting both criteria whereas 35 patients (4.5%) with isolated laryngeal involvement and 10 (1.3%) patients with isolated respiratory involvement were only diagnosed according to the WAO 2020 criteria. Twenty-three patients (3.0%) had a diagnosis of indolent systemic mastocytosis. Mastocytosis was related to grade 5 anaphylaxis [p = 0.022, OR (CI) = 2.9 (1.1–7.6)]. Venom allergy was a risk factor for grade 5 anaphylaxis among those for whom an eliciting allergen could be determined [p = 0.03, OR (CI) = 2.7 (1.1–6.8)]. For drug induced anaphylaxis, parenteral route of drug administration and proton pump inhibitor (PPI) allergy were considered as risk factors for grade 5 anaphylaxis [p < 0.001, OR (CI) = 6.5 (2.5–17.0); p = 0.011, OR (CI) = 10.3 (1.6–63.3)]. Conclusion: This multicenter study demonstrated that both criteria identified the majority of patients with anaphylaxis, but the WAO 2020 diagnostic criteria identified an additional 6%. Hymenoptera stings, PPI allergy, parenteral drug administration, and underlying mastocytosis were associated with more severe episodes.