Skin TestingAllergies can be caused by many internal and external factors, with symptoms ranging from annoying to life threatening. No matter what the circumstance or severity, any allergy sufferer can testify that they are miserable. Fortunately, allergies can be treated, and in some cases, the triggers are easily avoidable. One of the most frustrating situations an individual can be in, is to suffer with respiratory, nasal, or eye symptoms without knowing the trigger. At Advanced Allergy & Asthma Associates/Food Allergy Center of Illinois, we use a variety of diagnostic techniques, depending on the situation.
In most cases, skin testing is the preferable option. It is one of the most accurate, cost effective, comfortable, and convenient methods of diagnosing many food and environmental allergies. It is more economical than blood testing, and it identifies more allergies.
Skin testing can accurately detect many of the most common allergies including:
- Medication, such as penicillin
- Allergy-triggered asthma
- Contact dermatitis
- Bees and other venomous insects
- Inhaled dust, mold, pollens, and other natural allergens (hay fever)
This technique, also known as prick testing, can detect over 40 common allergies, and yields near-instant results. It is completed right here in our comfortable office. The test is usually performed on the forearm or (for children) upper back. We will begin by examining the skin in that area and cleaning it with a sanitizing agent. We then carefully mark the points to be tested for accurate identification.
Once the site has been prepared, a minute amount of specific potential allergens is pricked onto the skin, corresponding with the appropriate marks. For accurate results, the allergen only needs to enter the upper layer of skin. The procedure will not feel like an injection – it is painless and it should not cause bleeding.
Typically, an allergic individual will react within 20 minutes. Due to the small quantity of allergens used, the reaction is not severe; it manifests as a small bump, resembling a mosquito bite. We will measure the size of the bump, and then remove the marks with alcohol.
Once the source of your symptoms has been identified, we can help you control or eliminate the problem. Potential treatments may include avoidance, medication, or immunotherapy.
You can live your life free from the misery of allergies. The skillful, compassionate, doctors and staff at Advanced Allergy & Asthma Associates/Food Allergy Center of Illinois are here to help, with three offices conveniently located in Crystal Lake, and Elgin. Call (847) 888-8802 and schedule your appointment today.
Advanced Allergy & Asthma AssociatesDr. Noga Askenazi | Dr. Eugenia Hahn | Meredith Cirrincione
Dr. Noga Askenazi is a nationally recognized asthma and allergy specialist who is board certified in pediatric and adult allergy. Her areas of special interest are innovative treatment of rashes, sinusitis, food allergies, asthma and immune disorders. She was past President of the ISAAI (Illinois Society of Allergy, Asthma, & Immunology), works on state and national committees for advancement of the allergy field and is a consultant for Advocate, AMITA, Northwestern amongst other health care systems. Her joy is helping patients reach their goals after together determining best treatments. Her staff and patients are a chosen family, and she invests in their happiness. She enjoys gardening, biking and cooking to good music.
Dr. Eugenia Hahn is a highly recognized board certified allergist and immunologist who treats patients of all ages. Her areas of special interest are food allergy, eczema, and asthma. She is president of the Illinois Society of Allergy & Asthma, a National Committee leader of the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology, a member of the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology working on new treatment options for patients. She is a consultant for Advocate, Northwestern, AMITA, Northwest Community healthcare systems amongst many others. Her patients mean everything to her as she takes pride in finding the why behind the problem. She enjoys reading and spending time with her family.
Meredith Cirrincione is a board certified Physician Assistant and specializes in treating allergies, with a focus on asthma, rashes, environmental allergies, chemical and food allergies. She holds a Masters in Physician Assistant Studies from The Chicago Medical School - Rosalind Franklin University of Health Sciences. She is a Fellow member of the American Academy of Physician Assistants, the Illinois Academy of Physician Assistants, and the Association of PAs in Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. She likes to approach things holistically. She is a strong patient advocate and adored by her patients. She enjoys singing, reading, cooking, and the great outdoors.