Daniel Koch 43-year-old man from New Brunswick man died after a single wasp sting. He was not aware that he was allergic, and according to his family he never displayed signs of an allergy before. “Actually, when the rest of us got a cold, we’d go to the doctor. When he got a cold, he’d fight it and he always won. I always thought his health was pretty good,” declared his father.
Daniel was trying to locate a wasp nest under a table when he was stung in the face by a wasp. He collapsed in a few minutes. His family administered and EpiPen and performed CPR, but it was not enough to save his life. He died on the way to the hospital.
Fatal allergic reactions are rare
When it comes to allergic reaction to insect stings, only one percent of the population is at risk. Additionally, it is possible to develop allergies at any stage of life, although allergic reactions rarely lead to death.
“It is unusual to have the reaction the way it’s described … but certainly, one percent of the population could have a reaction to their next sting. The problem is you can’t really do any screening for that,” explained David Fischer, president of Canadian Society of Allergy and Clinical Immunology.
Patients with serious insect allergies are vulnerable because it is hard to access desensitization treatments. Additionally, there is a shortage of EpiPens in Canada. “It’s a double whammy because if you don’t have the desensitization we said, ‘Well, you’d better carry an EpiPen so you know how to treat yourself,’ and now we’re having a hard time getting those as well. “It is a big problem, and I’ve certainly got a lot of anxious patients.”
Patrick Supernaw is the lead editor for Great Lakes Ledger. Patrick has written for many publications including The Huffington Post and Vanity Fair. Patrick is based in Ottawa and covers issues affecting his city. In addition to his severe hockey addiction, Pat also enjoys kayaking and can often be found paddling the Rideau Canal. Contact Pat here