An allergy skin prick test is one of the most common methods of testing for potential allergic triggers. This minimally invasive technique allows multiple allergens to be tested at once with results ready for review in approximately 20 minutes.
What is the Procedure for a Skin Prick or Scratch Test?
Before beginning the procedure, your allergy doctor will first cleanse the area of skin to be used for testing. Then, your allergist will place small amounts of suspected allergens on the forearm or upper back. Using a disposable pricking device, he or she will prick the skin, allowing the possible allergic trigger to be introduced beneath the surface of the epidermal layer.
After approximately 20 minutes, your Atlanta allergist will check for an allergic reaction, which typically includes swelling or a raised bump (hive) at the site. Once the triggers causing your allergic reactions have been determined, your allergist can begin developing an individualized treatment plan.
Is an Allergy Skin Prick Test Safe?
A skin prick test is safe for almost all patients. Typically, the most common side effect of this form of allergy testing is itchy, swollen bumps at the test site. In most cases, these bumps will disappear within a few hours, although they can last for up to two days. Your Atlanta allergist may recommend a mild, over-the-counter cortisone cream to help reduce itching and swelling.
In extremely rare cases, a skin test can result in a severe allergic reaction; this is why it is so important that you have any allergy testing done in a professional setting where emergency medications are available.
Contact the Atlanta Allergists at the Center for Allergy and Asthma
The board certified allergists at the Center for Allergy and Asthma of Georgia can help you determine the cause of your allergy symptoms. Call (770) 459-0620 to schedule your allergy testing appointment today at any of our convenient Atlanta area locations in Carrollton, Hiram, Griffin, Villa Rica, Newnan, Smyrna/Vinings, Peachtree City/Fayetteville, Acworth/Kennesaw, and Douglasville Georgia.