Woman's unbothered attitude toward life threatening allergic reaction shocks doctors


‘Everyone is quite stressed here’: Woman’s calm attitude toward life-threatening allergic reaction shocks doctors

A woman has gone viral on TikTok for her unbothered attitude after experiencing a potentially life-threatening allergic reaction. 


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Posted on Oct 2, 2023   Updated on Dec 14, 2023, 2:56 pm CST

A woman has gone viral on TikTok for her unbothered attitude after experiencing a potentially life-threatening allergic reaction. 

In a video posted Sept. 29, TikTok user Shiv Sewlal (@shiv_sewlal) records herself walking in public, with severely swollen eyes. “I don’t know what happened, but something clearly happened,” she says. By Monday, her video had over 15 million views.

Continuing at home, she debates herself on whether or not to go to the hospital, unsure of weather or not the situation is severe enough to warrant a trip to the emergency room. 

“I feel completely fine, it’s just… this is not looking fine,” she says. As the swelling increases around her eyes, she adds, “I can’t see properly.” 

@shiv_sewlal I still don’t know what I touched that caused the reaction but after rubbing my eyes – I immediately started swelling up #allergicreactioncheck #peanutallergyawareness #epipencheck ♬ original sound – SHIV

Finally, Sewlal makes the decision to go to the hospital, but with one problem– the facial recognition scanner that controls the doors to her apartment won’t recognize her. She tries numerous times, but because of the severity of the swelling, the device is unable to recognize her face. 

After making it to the hospital, Sewlal was taken into a resuscitation room and given adrenaline for the allergic reaction. When asked if she had used her EpiPen, she responded that she had not, claiming that she didn’t know whether or not she should use it. 

“You must use it,” the doctor tells her, in a recording of their conversation. 

Over the course of her hospital visit, Sewlal was given two shots for the allergic reaction, as well as an IV drip. Recording herself sitting in bed, she says “I thought I was being dramatic, or like, you know, it’s not that bad,” she says. “But like… everyone is quite stressed, here.”

Sewlal is known for her videos about her experiences as a person with numerous allergies, asthma, and eczema. In a video for her YouTube channel, she shares that she has allergies to over 40 different substances– among them wheat, nuts, citric acid, and penicillin. 

This is far from Sewlal’s first experience with a severe allergic reaction. In a video from Jul. 26, she shares a similar reaction. 

“I brought my own allergy-friendly food & bedding but I still had a reaction,” she wrote in the video’s caption. “Probably because of environmental factors.”

Many commenters were shocked by Sewlal’s calm, unbothered reaction to her allergy flareup. 

“As a nurse, I’m not going to lie, I’m panicking that you didn’t use your epi pen,” one user wrote. “I’m glad all turned out well, but in the future, that’s an immediate ER visit.” 

“Why are you so calm I’m freaking out watching this,” another shared. 

In a followup video, Sewlal shares what it was that set off the potentially life-threatening reaction– indirectly touching peanuts. 

In her original video, Sewlal shows a conversation between herself and a nurse, in which the nurse tells her that something she’d touched is what’s causing the reaction. According to her followup, she confirms that she had indirect contact with peanuts. 

“I touched something that still had peanut bits on it,” she wrote in the video’s caption. “And I rubbed my eyes after touching it.”

In her original video, sitting in the hospital bed and receiving IV fluids, she’s still in a lighthearted mood, laughing and joking around despite the seriousness of the situation. 

“When in doubt, just go to the hospital,” she says. 

The Daily Dot reached out to Sewlal via email. 

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*First Published: Oct 2, 2023, 1:29 pm CDT