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skin prick test for allergens

Skin Tests for Allergens: Everything is a Nutshell

Skin prick test is normally done at a physician’s clinic. The customary approach involves a nurse conducting the test, while a doctor interprets the outcome. The overall procedure takes about 20 to 45 minutes. An expert based in London says, some of these tests trigger allergic reactions immediately, whereas some other tests may require several days to reveal the symptoms.

The test procedure

A skin prick test for allergens is also popularly known as scratch or puncture test. It is normally used to ensure allergies to mold, dust mites, pollen grains, pet dander and certain foods. The test is conducted on the upper back of children and forearm of adults.

Though needles are used, but the procedure is not at all painful. The scratch tests use special needles or lancets that are hardly pushed beyond your skin surface. There’s no bleeding either and at the most, you’ll feel a moment of discomfort.

First, the attending nurse will rub the skin surface of the test site with a cotton ball doused in alcohol. This disinfect the area and then, he or she will draw tiny marks on the skin surface before applying a drop of different allergen extract right next to each of the marks.

In the next step, the nursing staff will use the lancet to prick your skin on the allergen extracts. This ensures the allergens coming in direct contact to your body. You’ll see how different lancets will be used for the different allergens. You should make advance booking at any clinic for skin prick test.

In addition to the allergen extracts, the puncture test also includes applying two more substances to the skin. These are:

Glycerine: Usually, it doesn’t cause any allergic problem.

Histamine: On the other hand, most people are allergic to this.

Now, if your skin reacts to glycerine, then you’ve a sensitive skin and if you don’t react to histamine, you may have an allergy problem, but your skin doesn’t reveal it that easily. This information helps the doctor to interpret your test results more accurately.

Almost 15 minutes after pricking the skin, the nurse observes your skin for any possible allergic symptom or reaction. A little raised, tiny, reddish, itchy bumps will arise on your skin within that time, if you’re allergic to to any of the substances tested on you. After the test gets over, the nursing staff will wash your skin with alcohol to remove all the marks. Find out more about the treatment and management of skin prick test facilities here.

Medical Express Clinic, located on Harley Street in Marylebone, is a prestigious private center for this type of tests and diagnosis. Patch tests and skin injection tests are also performed here apart from the skin prick test for allergens.

A Patch test is usually prescribed and done under the guidance of a dermatologist. It is mostly done to detect allergic reactions that are delayed and take at least a few days to develop. It doesn’t use a needle, rather the allergens are applied to patches, which are then brought in contact to your skin. At the Medical Express Clinic not only we routinely use the skin prick tests and provide flawless results.

 4 Dec 2017

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