Risk factorsBy Mayo Clinic staff
While anyone can have an allergic or nonallergic reaction to a drug, a few factors can increase your risk. These include:
- Having a past allergic reaction to the same drug or another drug. Even if past reactions have been mild, you may still be at risk of a more severe reaction.
- Taking a similar drug to one that caused a reaction in the past. For example, if you've had a reaction to penicillin, you also may be sensitive to some other antibiotics.
- Having a weakened immune system from conditions such as the Epstein-Barr virus or HIV/AIDS.
- Having a history of other allergies, such as hay fever.
- Taking several drugs at the same time, or taking frequent doses of the same medication.
Those who have a greater risk of developing a more severe reaction to medications include people with:
- Heart disease
- High blood pressure
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