Allergy Skin Testing
Allergy skin testing is the most accurate method of evaluating allergies. Allergy skin testing can be in the form of skin prick testing, intradermal testing, or skin patch testing. These tests are all safe, minimally invasive procedures that are easily interpreted in office by our Board Certified Allergist.
Medications containing antihistamines should be stopped at least 5 days prior to skin testing.
Allergy Skin Testing For Children
The American Academy of Pediatrics does not consider age to be a restriction to skin testing. The appropriateness of skin testing for children depends on the individual child and their symptoms. At Allergy, Asthma & Sinus Associates, we specialize in pediatric allergies. We work with families to ensure that both the child and parents receive quality care.
Skin Prick Testing
Skin prick testing is the most common test performed for allergies. This is a simple, in office procedure that is highly accurate and virtually pain free. This procedure involves introducing very small amounts of specific allergens into the superficial layers of the skin through an indentation or a “prick.” The allergens used for this test are selected by the allergist based on your medical history and personal concerns. The results of skin prick testing are generally available within minutes.
Some patients may also receive intradermal testing after completing skin prick testing. This procedure involves injecting a small amount of allergen under the skin and monitoring the site for a reaction. Similar to the skin prick test, the results of intradermal testing are typically available within minutes.
Skin Patch Testing
Skin patch testing is performed to detect the presence of allergic contact dermatitis (Type IV hypersensitivity). This procedure involves applying patches with test substances in small chambers to a patient’s back. The allergic reactions usually appear 2-4 days after applying the patches and thus patients are seen in the office for a total of 3 visits (one visit to apply the patches and then two follow up visits).