Adrian Peterson remembers scary allergic reaction to seafood

Ross Jones,

Adrian Peterson’s training camp scare last offseason has him speaking out about the dangers of anaphylaxis, a severe allergic reaction, and the best way to go about preventing it.

Peterson, who was intensely rehabbing his torn ACL in his right knee last year in Mankato, Minn., followed up a morning practice by grabbing a quick lunch.

“I ate a couple of bowls of gumbo with scallops and shrimp inside,” Peterson told in a telephone interview. “Like 10 minutes after I finished eating, I got back to my room and I was laying down and I started feeling some symptoms.

“My eyes and throat started itching and I raised up and I noticed that my face started to swell up.”

Peterson was experiencing the onset effects of anaphylaxis which results in up to 1,500 deaths annually. His first reaction was to notify Vikings head trainer Eric Sugerman.

“While I’m on the phone, my throat started to close,” Peterson remembered. “So I’m barely getting air and I tried telling him that I had an allergic reaction to something and I need him to come up. Obviously, he heard it in my voice and he shot up to my room as fast as he could.”

Sugerman rushed up to Peterson’s dorm room at Mankato State University and injected him with an EpiPen, a device used to transport a measured dose of epinephrine, in his right thigh.

“I immediately started to feel my throat release and the swelling throughout started to go down and it gave me time to go to the hospital and get further treatment.”

Peterson returned to the facility a few hours later, but the minutes of fear and uncertainty still live with him today. Weeks later, he would learn that he is allergic to shrimp, scallops and lobster, which was especially upsetting since it was one of his favorite foods.

Peterson now carries two EpiPens with him at all times in case he has another attack. He also has done research on the topic and decided to partner with Mylan Specialty L.P. to become a spokesman for the Show Us Your EpiPens campaign which recognizes the 25th anniversary of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval of EpiPen Auto-Injector.

“It’s important to always have an action plan, which is avoiding allergic triggers, having access to EpiPen auto-injectors and seek any further assistance if you have an allergic reaction.”