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Starship Paediatric Immunology and Allergy

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Allergy Skin Prick Tests

Many children referred for possible allergies will have skin prick tests done at the time of their appointment. It is important that no antihistamine (e.g. Phenergan, Lorapaed, Dimetapp etc) has been taken for 5 days prior to skin tests, as these can interfere with the results. Skin testing involves placing small drops of the allergen (the allergen is the thing being tested, such as dust mite or peanut) on the skin and then pricking through the drop with a small lancet. The prick is very superficial, and most children are not upset by having skin tests done. The results will be read after 15 minutes and your child will be seen with the result.

Some allergy skin tests are more complicated. If the first stage skin prick tests show no reaction for antibiotics and venom then a second stage of intradermal (injections just under the skin) tests are done.  This type of testing is often difficult in very young children, so may not always be pursued depending on the history of reaction.

This page was last updated at 2:22PM on September 23, 2019.