If you suspect that you might have allergies, the first thing you’ll want to do is consult with an allergist. You must have a qualified medical professional go through your medical history and perform an exam to determine whether or not your symptoms are due to allergies. While there are certain types of allergy tests that you can find at your local drugstores these days, these tests aren’t comprehensive and may even cause a false positive. This is why you should always turn to an allergist.
When to Get an Allergy Blood Test
You probably know that there are a couple of different tests that can be used to diagnose allergies. One of the most common types is a skin prick test; however, sometimes blood testing is the best strategy. So, when might you need a blood test to diagnose allergies?
- If you have certain skin conditions such as dermatitis or severe eczema, which can affect the results of the test
- If you are taking certain medications such as antidepressants or antihistamines
- If you are prone to severe allergic reactions (known as anaphylaxis), which can be dangerous and even life-threatening
If you are dealing with one or more of these scenarios, then an allergist may recommend an allergy blood test over the traditional skin prick test.
Reasons for Allergy Blood Testing
If you think your symptoms are due to allergies this may have brought you into an allergist’s office; however, not everyone recognizes the signs and symptoms of allergies. It may be a good idea to undergo an allergy blood test (also referred to as an allergen-specific IgE antibody test) if you are dealing with any of these symptoms:
- Trouble breathing
- Chest tightness
- Nasal congestion
- Sneezing and coughing
- Tingling or itchy mouth
- Abdominal pain
If you are currently undergoing immunotherapy (aka allergy shots), your allergist may also recommend getting periodic allergy blood testing to be able to monitor the effectiveness of your treatment.
If you are dealing with allergies and you’re not sure what’s causing your symptoms then allergy testing may be the best option for you. Turn to an allergist to learn more about allergy testing and to get your allergy symptoms under control.