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Allergy tests can cause itchiness locally. It is rare but some may have a severe allergic reaction to allergens used in testing. Your doctor will monitor you for some time after the test to manage any negative reactions.
Keep a diary of your allergy symptoms. When you have symptoms, write them down, including:
What time it happened
Where it happened
What you ate
What you have come in contact with
For certain tests, your doctor may ask you to stop certain medications before the test.
Description of the Test
There are several types of allergy tests:
Blood testing—You will roll up your sleeve. The area will be cleaned with an antiseptic. An elastic band will be tied around your upper arm. A needle will be inserted into the vein. Blood will be collected into a vial. The elastic band will be untied and the needle will be removed. The blood sample will be sent to the lab for testing. The blood will be tested to see if it reacts to certain substances.
Skin testing—The suspected cause of your allergic reaction will be applied directly to your skin. It may be applied with a shallow scratch or with a skin-prick needle. The needle will push the substance into the upper layer of your skin. For every allergen tested, you will have a separate scratch or skin prick. Redness and swelling will appear if you are allergic. It usually takes about 15-20 minutes to appear. This may be followed by intradermal testing. In this case, the allergen is placed deeper into the skin.
Patch testing—Patches containing suspected allergens are placed on the skin. The patches will be left in place for 48 hours. You will be asked not to shower or get them wet. They will then be removed. The skin will be examined after 48-96 hours. If there is a reaction, the skin will become itchy at the site. A blister-like lesion may form.
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This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.