Skin Prick Allergy Test

What is a Skin Prick Test?

A Test to Help Determine Allergies

A skin test for allergy is one of the tests used to help determine if your child is allergic to eggs.

…Just One of the Tests

Due to the complex nature of food allergies, a skin test is just one of the tests used to help determine an allergy.

How Long Does a Skin Test Take?
What Happens During a Skin Prick Test?

Skin prick tests take about 30 minutes from start to finish and are typically performed on your child’s back but can sometimes be done on the arm.

Lines are drawn on their back and small needles are used to prick the skin to apply the test at the endpoints of each line. This usually includes one application of a pure histamine, a prick of nothing, and a prick of the allergen in question.

Is a Skin Prick Test Painful?

The needles used are very small and thin. I hate to sound cliché but it's more of a tickle than a hurt. The sides of your back are more ticklish than you've ever imagined. Your child will squirm but it's like getting away from a serious tickle.

After the test is applied there will be some itching because a histamine is being applied directly to the skin. This can start to happen within a few minutes. There will also be at least one spot that becomes a welt, again from the pure histamine reaction in the "control" location, but also possibly the site where the allergen being tested.

The testing site must not be touched and it will become quite itchy. This is a great time to give your kid a little screen time with an ipad or phone!

Is a Skin Test Accurate?

A skin test is a tool for your doctor. Not you.

Skin tests are accurate for what they are inteded to do but they don't tell the whole story. Food allergies are complicated and multiple tests are usually necessary to paint an accurate picture of a condition.

How to Prepare for a Skin Test

Typically you will be advised to not use any antihistamines for some time prior to this test. Follow your doctor’s orders!

One skin test we took resulted in no reaction, even at the histamine site. My son had a Benadryl one day inside of his recommendation and we had to cancel the test we waited months to take.

As I’ve started before, these tests are tools for your doctor. Follow their orders.

* Again, I’m not a doctor, but this has been my experience.

“It’s not what happens to you in life that’s important!
It’s how you handle it.”

~ Egg Allergy Dad