Allergy Skin Testing
A very small amount of certain allergens is put into your skin by making a small indentation or “prick” on the surface of your skin.
If you have allergies, a little swelling that looks and feels like a mosquito bite will occur where the allergen(s) to which you are allergic was introduced. If you are allergic to ragweed pollen but not to cats, only the ragweed allergen will cause a little swelling or itching. The spot where the cat allergen was applied will remain normal.
You don’t have to wait long to find out what is triggering your allergies. Reactions occur within about 20 minutes. And you generally won’t have any other symptoms besides the small hives where the tests were done, which go away within 30 minutes. If your prick skin tests are negative or minimal, more sensitive “intradermal” tests may be used in which a small amount of allergen is injected within the skin.
Allergy Pre-testing Instructions
- Certain medications must be avoided prior to testing. Please consult our office when scheduling your test to make certain none of your medications will interfere with the test.
- If you are currently ill or have been ill the past week, please reschedule your testing to a time when you have had a chance to fully recover
- Patients actively wheezing or experiencing a rash may not be tested. Wheezing and a rash may be associated with anaphylaxis, active asthma, bronchitis, or pneumonia.
- Please report any events of anaphylaxis. No testing will be allowed if you have recently experienced anaphylaxis in the past 3 weeks.
- Please wear or bring a sleeveless shirt as we will use both arms from shoulders to wrists. Children’s testing will be done on the back.
- Please understand that every patient has controls placed prior to testing. This is to ensure your test is as accurate as possible. If for some unforeseen reason your controls are not what they need to be, we will review your medication list again and possibly reschedule your testing at a later date or have blood drawn for testing instead.
Testing takes approximately 1hr 30 min for adults and 45 minutes for children.
***As a courtesy to our office and to other patients needing testing, please give advanced notice of at least 24 hours if needing to cancel. There will be a $75 fee for each no-show or cancellation outside of the 24 hour window.***