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Most people are able to eat papaya without any problems, although there are some potential side effects associated with the consumption or use of this fruit. Some of the possible papaya side effects include skin irritation, respiratory problems, or gastrointestinal disturbances. Those who are allergic to products containing latex are usually advised to avoid the use of papaya, as are pregnant or breastfeeding women. One of the most severe side effects of eating papaya is a potentially life-threatening type of allergic reaction known as anaphylaxis. Any specific questions or concerns about side effects in an individual situation should be discussed with a doctor or other medical professional.
Skin irritation is among the most frequently reported papaya side effects. Itching, swelling, and the development of a rash that resembles eczema may occur as a result of direct contact with papaya or products that contain this fruit. A bright red rash may also appear around the mouth after eating papaya.
Respiratory problems may develop as papaya side effects in those who are sensitive to parts of this fruit. Nasal allergy symptoms such as watery eyes, sneezing, and coughing are among the most common respiratory symptoms. Patients with a history of asthma or bronchitis may notice a worsening of symptoms after coming into contact with papaya.
Moderate to severe gastrointestinal disturbances are possible side effects of eating papaya. These symptoms may include nausea, diarrhea, or heartburn. In more serious cases, damage to the esophagus, stomach, or intestines may occur in those who are highly sensitive to fruits such as papaya.
A person who has a latex allergy is likely to also be allergic to papaya and other fruits. The supervising physician will usually provide a list of fruits that should be avoided when a latex allergy is diagnosed. Women who are pregnant or breastfeeding are usually advised to avoid products containing papaya in order to reduce the risks to the unborn child or infant.
Perhaps the most severe of all of the possible papaya side effects is an allergic reaction known as anaphylaxis. Symptoms such as chest pain, difficulty breathing, or facial swelling often indicate the presence of this type of allergy. Without immediate medical attention, anaphylaxis can cause permanent brain damage or even death within a matter of minutes. This usually occurs due to severe swelling of the throat, which prevents oxygen from reaching the brain as well as the other organs of the body.