The other night, it was just before midnight, right before I was to get off work when one of my off duty student workers, B, came to make me aware that her and a couple of her friends were in the back of our department studying. She also informed me that one of her friends, KK, took a bite of oatmeal that she had purchased from the coffee shop upstairs. Not a 10 seconds after she swallowed it, she started showing signs of an allergic reaction. B said KK’s throat was closing and that she had injected her epi-pen but it was expired. Hence, leaving them unsure if it would do anything. B told me they had called 911 and paramedics were on the way. I went back to see what was going on. I cringed as I saw KK hunched over in the chair, hands curled in, grasping for breath. B and her other friend assured KK that she was going to be ok and urged her to stay calm. The 911 dispatcher stayed on the line giving them instructions and asking questions while he waited for the emergency team to get there. Soon afterwards, the paramedics arrived, took KK’s vitals, and gave her oxygen. They loaded her on the stretcher and took her to the hospital. B and her other friend, left to go to the hospital as well.
KK ended up being in the hospital for a few hours while they administered a steroid to counteract the reaction. The next day B went up to the coffee shop to ask them again about the oatmeal and whether it contained nuts. They said they would make sure that they told people that their oatmeal did have nuts to avoid having this happen again.
KK also learned to make sure her epi-pen is not expired! You never know when you may really need it. Scary!