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Information for patients
Respiratory and sleep physiology
Please read this information carefully prior to your / your child’s appointment.
An appointment has been made for you to attend for a skin prick allergy test. Your appointment letter will tell you the location, date, and time of your appointment.
Your Healthcare Professional has referred you for this test to help find out whether or not you have an allergic response to specific triggers.
These triggers, known as allergens, may be particles in the air such as tree pollens, grasses, dust mites or moulds. They may also be food products such as nuts, eggs or milk.
Before you attend for your skin prick allergy test, there are certain medications that you should not take, which could interfere with the test results. If you are unsure about which medication you should not take, please contact the department.
The allergens are manufactured into liquid solutions, which can be introduced to the skin on the forearms. Which allergens we use, depends upon what your Healthcare Professional asks us to test for. In rare cases, you may be asked to bring certain foods to the appointment with you. Your appointment letter will tell you if this is the case.
Please expect to be in the department for between 20 and 60 minutes. Children are often monitored for longer periods following the test.
No, the test does not hurt. The procedure is similar to a very tiny pin prick, which is not deep enough to draw blood. Whilst it does not hurt, small children may experience slight discomfort to the procedure. Should the test produce a weal and flare, this may feel itchy. Anti-histamine cream applied following the test should reduce this.
Skin prick allergy tests are very safe. Whilst extremely rare, anaphylaxis (significant allergic reaction) is possible. In the unlikely event that this does occur, medical professionals are available to provide the appropriate treatment.
If you have asthma/hay fever, it is possible that you may get asthma/hay fever symptoms in the hours following the test. Again, this is rare, but please ensure you have your reliever inhaler or hay fever medication with you.
The results will not be ready straight away as they will need analysing and processing. They will be passed on to the healthcare professional who referred you for the tests and should be available for your next clinic appointment.
If you are unable to attend the appointment that has been arranged for you, please contact the department on 01709 424572 as soon as possible so that we can organise another appointment for you, and offer your appointment time to another patient on our waiting list.
You can choose whether or not to have the tests, but if you do choose not to complete them, important information may be missed which may impact on receiving an accurate diagnosis and treatment.
Skin prick allergy test - patient information leaflet
Produced by Department of Respiratory and Sleep Physiology, February 2022.
Revision due: February 2024. Version: 1.0
©The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust 2022. All rights reserved