Why It Is Done
Allergy testing is done to find out what substances (allergens) cause an allergic reaction.
The skin prick test can also be done to:
- Identify inhaled (airborne) allergens, such as tree, shrub, and weed pollens, molds, dust, feathers, and pet dander.
- Identify likely food allergens (such as eggs, milk, peanuts, nuts, fish, soy, wheat, or shellfish).
- Determine whether a person may be allergic to a Reference medicine or insect venom.
A blood test on a blood sample may be done instead of a skin prick test if a person:
- Has Reference hives Opens New Window or another skin condition, such as Reference eczema Opens New Window, that makes it hard to see the results of skin testing.
- Cannot stop taking a medicine, such as an Reference antihistamine Opens New Window or tricyclic antidepressant, that may prevent or reduce a reaction to a substance even when a person is allergic to the substance.
- Has had a severe allergic reaction (Reference anaphylaxis Opens New Window).
- Has had positive skin tests to many foods. Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) can find out the foods that a person is most allergic to.
|By:||Reference Healthwise Staff||Last Revised: Reference June 30, 2011|
|Medical Review:||Reference E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Reference Rohit K Katial, MD - Allergy and Immunology