NHS Service

Blood: The Gold Standard For An Allergy Test Or Intolerance Test


Blood: The Gold Standard For An Allergy Test Or Intolerance Test


Skin prick testing is one of the most common forms of allergy testing but blood sampling is another option, this is when a small amount of blood is taken from the patient and analysed for specific antibodies produced by the immune system in response to an allergen.  If you are looking for allergy testing in Northampton or allergy testing in Leighton Buzzard, then contact Touchwood Pharmacy who offer both skin prick testing and blood sampling. We also offer allergy testing in Northolt.

What are the different types of allergy testing?

There are several different forms of intolerance test and which one is right for you will depend on a number of different factors which your healthcare professional or pharmacist will discuss with you. The options include:

•           Skin prick testing – one of the most common allergy tests involves putting a drop of liquid onto your forearm which contains a substance that you suspect you are allergic to. The skin under the drop is then gently pricked and if you react to the substance then an itchy, red lump will usually appear. This is a safe and relatively  painless way to test for an allergy.

•           Patch tests – patch tests are used specifically to gain information about a type of eczema called contact dermatitis which is where the skin itself reacts to a particular allergen. A small amount of the suspected allergen is added to metals discs which are taped to the skin for 48 hours.  These are monitored for a reaction and this type of testing tends to be used for contact exposure to products like washing powder or different skin applications

•           Elimination diet – simply eliminate a particular foodstuff from your diet and watch to see if symptoms improve. To confirm the diagnosis, re-introduce the food gradually back into the diet and see if the reaction re-occurs. Elimination diets should be monitored by a healthcare professional

•           Blood test – blood tests are often used in conjunction with other allergy testing options to help confirm a diagnosis. A sample of blood is taken and analysed for specific antibodies which the immune system will produce as a response to an allergen

Touchwood Pharmacy offers allergy testing in Northolt, Northampton and Leighton Buzzard. Our website explains more about the allergy testing service and the different options available https://www.touchwoodpharmacy.com/