Quiz: Remember the definition of mal de mer?
allergy al·ler·gy (āl'ər-jē)
An abnormally high acquired sensitivity to certain substances, such as drugs, pollens, or microorganisms, that may include such symptoms as sneezing, itching, and skin rashes.
An abnormally high immunologic sensitivity to certain stimuli such as drugs, foods, environmental irritants, microorganisms, or physical conditions, such as temperature extremes. These stimuli act as antigens, provoking an immunological response involving the release of inflammatory substances, such as histamine, in the body. Allergies may be innate or acquired in genetically predisposed individuals. Common symptoms include sneezing, itching, and skin rashes, though in some individuals symptoms can be severe. See also anaphylactic shock.
A highly sensitive reaction of the body to certain substances, such as pollen, that are present in amounts that do not affect most people. Common indications of allergy include sneezing, skin rashes, itching, and runny nose.