Woman Suffers Anaphylaxis from Infested Vending Machine Coffee


A 21-year-old airline worker waiting to board a flight suffered anaphylaxis while drinking coffee at Son Sant Joan Airport near Palma, Majorca.

After purchasing the coffee from a vending machine and taking a sip, she noticed something odd about the taste and inspected the cup she was drinking from. It was infested with insects.

Almost immediately, her face began swelling and her throat closed, telltale signs of anaphylaxis, a serious, life-threatening reaction to a food, drug, insect venom or environmental substance.

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Medics on the scene administered epinephrine and rushed her to a nearby hospital where she was admitted to the intensive care ward. She was finally deemed stabilized enough to be discharged 36 hours later.

Workers at the airport claim the presence of insects is nothing new and that the shortage of staff has resulted in the machines not being cleaned as often as they should be.

The vending machine has been taken out of service and an investigation is under way.

The victim’s family has filed a complaint with the National Police.

We are thankful the medics were quick to recognize the woman was suffering a severe allergic reaction and administered epinephrine, the only drug that can halt and reverse the progression of anaphylaxis. We hope the woman is doing well after her ordeal. Their quick action may have saved her life.

We don’t know whether she was ever diagnosed with allergies, but the account is a cautionary tale for everyone who has been prescribed epinephrine: You never know when you may be exposed to your trigger. Always take two epinephrine auto-injectors along everywhere, every time, and administer the first when you first suspect anaphylaxis. if your symptoms don’t subside within a few minutes, administer the second and wait for emergency services to arrive.

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Dave Bloom
Dave Bloom
Dave Bloom is CEO and "Blogger in Chief" of SnackSafely.com.

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