allergy tests

Things to Know About Allergy Tests

Do you know someone who is concerned about food allergies, bee sting allergies, drug allergies, or poorly controlled hay fever? If so, they may be great candidates for allergy testing at Bernstein Allergy Group. We can test for a variety of allergies using various methods in our office, oftentimes the same day as your consultation appointment. Allergy testing encompasses three main categories:

  • Skin tests

The most common and popular way to test allergies. It is also the least painful way and covers a wide range of allergens including indoor/outdoor allergens, venom allergens, drugs like penicillin, and food allergens. Skin testing typically involves a gentle prick of the skin with a needle which barely pierces the surface of your skin, typically done on your forearm. In some instances, intradermal injections are required, which is usually done by injecting a small amount of allergen extract into the skin to see if there are any reactions to it. 

  • Blood tests

Serum testing is another option, especially when you are taking medications that may affect skin test results. This type of allergy test doesn’t expose your skin to allergens, instead, the lab will get a sample of your blood and check it for the presence of IgE antibodies to allergens in your system. 

  • Challenge test

The challenge test is usually done for food or drug allergies when your allergist wants to prove or disprove that you have an allergy. This is done by letting you ingest or eat small amounts of the concerning drug or food in increasing amounts until a full dose or serving size is reached. This process is all completed under the supervision of the doctor in the office.  

Allergy testing is done so you can be sure that you are not at higher risk of encountering severe allergy attacks in the future. For skin testing, you will need to be off all antihistamines at least 7 days prior to your visit. For more inquiries, contact our medical professionals at Bernstein Allergy.

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