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Allergy Testing: An Overview

Not all patients of The Asthma & Allergy Institute are candidates for allergy testing or allergy vaccine injections. This overview will provide information for those who may be considering allergy testing or allergy injections.

The first part of the allergy testing process at The Asthma & Allergy Institute is called prick testing. We use a derma-pik to perform the test. This is a needle-less procedure. A small plastic stick with a pronged end is used to introduce a small amount of an antigen on the top layer of the skin to test for sensitivity. An antigen is a substance that is introduced into the body, which produces antibodies and an allergic response (i.e., redness, swelling, itching).

We “prick” the inner portion of your forearm lightly with the derma-pik after we have numbered the antigens on your skin. Once we have pricked your arm, we ask that you hold still and do not scratch or touch the pricked areas for 15 minutes so that the antigen will remain on the skin.

Once the 15 minutes are up, we will wipe the antigen off of your skin and note the reaction, if any. If your skin has reacted, it may appear like a small mosquito bite with some possible redness around it, or may even itch. This reaction is called a wheal. We will measure the amount of reactivity you had and show the results to the physician. We will discuss any recommendations with you, and together we will decide if it will be beneficial for you to test further or take allergy injections (immunotherapy).


Allergy Testing:

Allergy Testing: An Overview

Intradermal Testing & Allergy Injections

Preparations / Precautions



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