Skin prick tests involve placing a small amount of allergen (usually on the front side of your forearm, or upper back) followed by a Skin Prick using a special Lancet to introduce a small amount of the allergen in the skin. This test is an important piece in the diagnosis of food and airborne allergies. In most cases it is generally safe and virtually painless and reliable.
Interpretation of the past, needs thorough knowledge and experience, as well as understanding of the potential limitations of the testing procedure. In addition, the test needs to be performed to conform with national and international guidelines.
It is therefore advised that the prick test be done in an allergy clinic, under the supervision of an appropriately trained specialist.
Another form of testing for allergens, especially those responsible for contact dermatitis, is known as “Patch testing”. Cosmetics, fragrances, metals, rubber products and sometimes antibiotics, are common contact allergens. The patch tests involve placement of these allergens in specially designed chambers and patches. These are usually placed on the upper back and remain affixed to the skin for a period of 48 -72 hours. The results are then read at stipulated intervals.
Dr. Chaudhry performs Patch Tests using both commercial extracts as well as your personal products, to help identify any culprit allergens contributing to your skin problems.
Drug Allergy Test
Drug allergy is an increasingly problematic situation and can pose a diagnostic or therapeutic challenge.
Assessment for drug allergies, including appropriate diagnostic tests (skin prick tests, intradermal tests or supervised injectable/oral challenges) is an important part of the work done by an allergy specialist.
Dr. Chaudhry will discuss your available options and relevant drugs to be tested as well as the testing route, protocols, limitations and interpretation of the results.
This involves injecting a small amount of diluted allergen extract within the skin. This form of testing is often needed as part of the diagnostic workup for drug and insect sting allergies. Again, familiarity and provision of the test in a safe clinical environment and understanding of the allergen concentrations, limitations and regulatory requirements are essential skills, which are best served seeing an allergy specialist.
Allergen Testing (Specifically Food & Drug Challenges)
Supervised “challenges” for foods and drugs are an important tool in the management of food and drug allergy.
The challenges should only be considered in consultation with a physician trained in providing these services and need to be done in a safe clinical environment according to current best practice and familiarity with the challenge protocol. Otherwise these challenges can be dangerous, and should only be considered in consultation with a physician trained in providing these services.
Dr. Chaudhry regularly and routinely performs food and drug challenges in carefully selected patients. We have an excellent safety record in this regard.