Friday, 15 March 2013

My Allergy Skin Prick Test


My first post and I decided to share this not so pretty sight of my inner forearm after being administered skin prick allergy test. After suffering from allergic rhinitis for almost 20 years (edit: read my long story here ), I finally did this test last August. Geez, I have not idea why it took me so long to get it done but am glad I got it done to confirm my source of allergy - dustmite.
  
I was tested for 14 types of nasal allergens and 4 types of food allergens. The skin on my inner forearm was pricked with a tiny amount of the suspected allergens and within about 20 minutes, skin around the prick became red and swollen, and had the wheal and flare reaction. Wheal is the red raised spot, many of them on my arm as seen in the picture. Having a red wheal don't necessarily indicates an allergy to that allergens. For my test (it might differ from test to test), I believe the wheal needs to be measuring at least 5mm in diameter to indicate allergy as my report showed I was allergic to dustmite and dog hair - both of which measured 5mm to 6mm while the rest like mold, cockroach, cat fur etc was less than 5mm.
  
The test is over quite quickly and painless. I highly recommend you take this test if you suspect you are suffering from allergies and would like to find out the source. You need to know the allergens you are reacting to in order to manage it effectively.

Note: If you are taking the skin prick test, avoid taking anti-histamines medications for about a week before the test so as not to affect the results of the test.

For more information on allergy skin prick test: