Why It Is Done
Allergy testing is done to find out what
substances (allergens) cause an allergic reaction.
The skin prick test can also be done
- Identify inhaled (airborne) allergens, such
as tree, shrub, and weed pollens, molds, dust, feathers, and pet
- Identify likely food allergens (such as eggs, milk,
peanuts, nuts, fish, soy, wheat, or shellfish).
- Determine whether
a person may be allergic to a
medicine or insect venom.
A blood test on a blood sample may be
done instead of a skin prick test if a person:
hives or another skin condition, such as
eczema, that makes it hard to see the results of skin
- Cannot stop taking a medicine, such as an
antihistamine or tricyclic antidepressant, that may
prevent or reduce a reaction to a substance even when a person is allergic to
- Has had a severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis).
- Has had positive skin tests
to many foods. Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) can find out the foods
that a person is most allergic to.
E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Rohit K Katial, MD - Allergy and Immunology
June 30, 2011
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