Skin testing is an effective way to diagnose allergies for Elgin residents
For people with an allergy, even the ingestion of the smallest amount a certain substance can trigger a severe, and potentially life threatening, reaction. Allergy tests provide vital information to allergists and allow them to diagnose and treat a wide variety of allergies. There are several different types of allergy tests available. Skin testing, blood testing, and even oral ingestion testing are all ways that we can determine the source of your reaction. When patients visit Advanced Allergy & Asthma Associates, skin testing is the most common and first type of testing performed to confirm an allergy diagnosis accurately.
Skin tests are effective at diagnosing the following allergic conditions:
- Hay fever
- Atopic dermatitis
- Penicillin allergy
- Food allergy
- Bee or stinging insect allergy
- Latex allergy
Before scheduling a skin test, Dr. Noga Askenazi, Dr. Dipika Patel, or Dr. Eugenia Hahn will take a detailed medical history that includes information about your symptoms and any methods of treatment you have used. We will also want to know what medications you are currently taking. Some medicines suppress allergic reactions, which can interfere with the results from skin testing.
Medications that can possibly interfere with skin testing include:
- Over the counter or prescription antihistamines
- Certain antidepressants
- Certain heartburn medications
- Xolair (used to treat asthma)
Skin testing is completed in one of our three offices. Results are usually available in about fifteen to thirty minutes. With skin testing, we are looking for immediate allergic reactions. For adults this test is usually performed on the forearm, and for children it is performed on the back.
One of our experienced allergists will use needle to penetrate the skin’s surface and expose you to a tiny amount of each allergen extract. The needle barely goes underneath the skin and does not bleed or cause pain.
After fifteen minutes, we will evaluate your skin for signs of allergic reaction, which will include small, raised, itchy bumps that often resemble a mosquito bite.
Allergy skin testing is a quick, easy, and effective way to diagnose allergies and allow us to develop a treatment plan that can dramatically improve your quality of life. If you are in or around the Elgin area, and you would like to schedule an appointment for allergy testing, call us today.