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New ASCIA Penicillin Allergy FAQ - April 2023

There are several types of penicillin antibiotics available, which are important for treating bacterial infections.

Many people are told that they have a penicillin allergy, or think that they have penicillin allergy, and are ‘labelled’ as having a penicillin allergy in their medical records. However, studies have shown that up to nine in ten of these people do not have a true penicillin allergy. Therefore, it is important to find out if you have a true penicillin allergy, so that you can receive the best treatment when you have a bacterial infection.

To answer the most frequently asked questions (FAQ) about penicillin allergy,  ASCIA Penicillin Allergy FAQ has been developed and is available at :

Being told that you have a penicillin allergy or thinking that you have a penicillin allergy when you do not have true penicillin allergy can mean that alternative antibiotics need to be used. These can result in longer treatment times, increased risk of side effects and higher healthcare costs.

If you have been labelled with a penicillin allergy, talk to your healthcare provider about being tested to find out if you have a true allergy. This information can help ensure that you receive the most effective and efficient treatment of bacterial infections.

This news item was issued on 14 April 2023 by Jill Smith, CEO of ASCIA, the peak professional body for clinical immunology and allergy in Australia and New Zealand.