Though your symptoms may suggest the cause of your allergies, allergy testing is the only way to precisely identify your allergens and determine the best treatment. At DFW Asthma & Allergy Center, Aasia Ghazi, MD, specializes in many types of allergy testing, from standard skin prick tests to customized patch testing and food challenges. If you need symptom relief, allergy testing is often the first step. To schedule an appointment, call the office in Plano, Texas, or use the online booking feature today.
Allergy testing guides treatment decisions by identifying your specific allergens. You or your child may need allergy testing before getting allergy shots or when you have symptoms that don't improve with over-the-counter medications, such as:
You should also seek allergy testing when you or your child have a severe allergic reaction to insect stings, food, or medication.
DFW Asthma & Allergy Center offers several types of allergy testing:
Your provider places a small drop of suspected allergens on your forearm and gently pricks the skin under each drop. You wait in the office for 15 minutes to see if a skin reaction occurs from any of the allergens. If you get a small, itchy bump, you have an allergy to that substance.
Patch testing identifies substances that cause an allergic reaction after they come into contact with your skin. That includes allergens such as poison ivy and oak, detergents, rubber, nickel, and many chemicals.
Your provider places multiple allergens on a self-adhesive patch. You wear the patch for several days and then go back to the office so they can check for skin reactions. DFW Asthma & Allergy Center often uses a patch test kit that includes many of the most common contact allergens.
During an intradermal test, your provider injects a small amount of allergen under your skin. Like a skin prick test, you develop a minor skin reaction if you have an allergy to the injected substance.
If you have a skin condition that prevents skin testing, or your skin test is inconclusive, your provider draws a blood sample and tests it for the presence of allergens.
A skin prick test or blood test is the first step for identifying food allergies. Your provider may also perform a food patch test or an oral food challenge.
The food patch test shows if you have a delayed reaction to foods. During an oral challenge, your provider gives you the suspected food. They begin with a very small dose and watch for a reaction.
If you don’t develop symptoms, they gradually increase the dose, taking time between each one to see if you have an allergic reaction.
To learn more about allergy testing, call DFW Asthma & Allergy Center or book an appointment online today.