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Capital & Coast DHB Respiratory Service

Public Service

Skin Allergy Testing

It sometimes helps to know whether a person has allergies to common things breathed in and sometimes to food products. Examples might be grass, animal fur, house dust mites, nuts, seafood.

To test for these, we put a tiny drop of extract of the allergen on to a patch of skin (usually forearm) and prick the skin very delicately with a needle. You hardly feel it because only the outer layer of skin is broken. Ten minutes or so later, we measure the little bump in the skin with a ruler.

Knowing whether there is an allergy like this can sometimes help with treatment.

This page was last updated at 3:28PM on September 16, 2019.