Allergy testing usually involves skin prick testing which is scratches basically on the skin with various things that you could be allergic to. Most patients we start out with a prick test when you come in for an office visit and we do the allergy testing. It sits on your skin for about 12 minutes or so and then we can actually read it and tell you the results that day so that's kind of nice to be able to come in and find out in the same day what your triggers are. Sometimes we will also use what are called intradermal allergy tests, which is just a little injection of the allergenic material under the skin which isn't necessarily needed in all cases but most patients do get the prick test and then a fair number also will get the intradermal. You can do blood allergy testing which is usually equally good at picking up allergy but we usually prefer the skin testing just because you get the results right away that day so patients usually prefer that and you also don't have to go through the process of a blood draw. The tests are pretty reliable, I mean we think that really if you have allergies probably an eighty to ninety percent of cases, those tests will pick it up.
So the most common allergens that we test for, part of our routine screening test for allergies, would be the pollen, so tree, grass, and weed pollen. We test for mold, both indoor and outdoor, dogs, cats, dust mites and cockroaches are part of kind of our screening panel and then if there's other specific things that the patient might be concerned about we can always add those on.
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