The People's Perspective on Medicine
man walking dog in the woods with his dog
Alpha-Gal Allergy

How Can You Prevent Tick Bites?

If you like to go out in the woods, you need a three-pronged strategy to prevent tick bites: protective clothing, effective repellent and daily tick checks.

Scott P. Commins, MD, PhD, alpha-gal allergy expert at UNC Chapel Hill
Podcasts

Show 1167: Will a Tick Bite Make You Allergic to Meat?

Many people have had a tick bite and are now allergic to red meat. The culprit is the lone star tick that triggers an alpha-gal allergy. How does that work?

a lone star tick, tick bites
Allergies

Will Tick Bites Make You Allergic to Red Meat?

Scientists have found that tick bites from two species, not just one, can trigger alpha-gal allergy to mammalian meat.

woman scratching an itch on her side
Alpha-Gal Allergy

Chigger Bites May Trigger Alpha-Gal Allergy to Red Meat

Do you get sick after eating red meat? Abdominal pain, diarrhea, hives or breathing problems are symptoms of alpha-gal allergy. Ticks bites and now chigger bites may trigger this nasty reaction.

David Weber, MD, MPH, professor of Medicine and Pediatrics, UNC School of Medicine and professor of Epidemiology, expert on tick-borne diseases
Podcasts

Show 1128: What You Need to Know About Tick-Borne Diseases

Tick-borne diseases now cover a wider range than they once did. How can you keep from getting infected, and what should you do if you are?

Young woman with dog wearing the right clothes for hiking
Alpha-Gal Allergy

The Right Clothes Can Protect You from Ticks

When venturing out into tick territory, wear the right clothes: long sleeves and long pants coated with permethrin. This can deter ticks and reduce the risk of bites.

a lone star tick, tick bites
Alpha-Gal Allergy

Why Is Alpha-Gal Allergy So Misunderstood and Misdiagnosed?

Imagine experiencing a life-threatening allergic reaction after eating a burger or barbecue. A marshmallow can also trigger an attack of alpha-gal allergy. Many doctors don't recognize it.

Woman using an EpiPen Epinephrine injector into her leg
Allergies

Are You Highly Allergic? What To Do About EpiPen Shortage?

The FDA has just warned about an EpiPen shortage. What took the agency so long? Read a tale of woe and intrigue about a life-saving drug.

Close up of probiotic capsule between the fingers
Allergies

Is There a Sugar from Mammals Hiding in Your Medicines?

An alpha-gal allergic reaction to a sugar from mammals could make certain medicines risky. How can you learn which to avoid?

beef shish kabobs on the grill
Alpha-Gal Allergy

Why Is Doctor Skeptical about Life-Threatening Allergy?

A bite from a lone star tick can lead a person to develop a life-threatening allergy to red meat. The safest course is to avoid eating meat.

an assortment of gelatin based gummy bears
Alpha-Gal Allergy

Gummy Bears Are Risky After Tick Bite Allergy

A tick bite allergy triggered by lone star ticks can lead to a dangerous delayed reaction to eating red meat or even gelatin gummy bears.

a lone star tick on the end of a finger
a lone star tick on the end of a finger
Podcasts

830 Alpha-Gal Allergy (archive)

The reaction to a bite from a lone star tick could be a delayed anaphylactic reaction to eating meat. This alpha-gal allergy can be life threatening.

a lone star tick on the end of a finger
grilled steaks on the grill with flames, grilled meat
a lone star tick on the end of a finger
a lone star tick on the end of a finger
Alpha-Gal Allergy

Tick Bite Leads to Scary Allergy

A bite from a lone star tick can lead to a scary allergy to mammalian meat–beef, pork, lamb, rabbit, venison, and more–that could be a medical emergency.

Alpha-Gal Allergy

Meat Allergy Could Be Deadly