Very rarely, allergic skin rash can be serious and life threatening and needs immediate medical attention.
An allergic reaction is when your immune system reacts to normally harmless substances and leads to an outbreak of red itchy rash e.g. urticaria, dermatitis. Very rarely, allergic skin rash can be serious and life threatening and needs immediate medical attention. Common allergens (allergy triggers) include medications, food, hair-dye, nickel, perfume and cosmetics.
(photo : Hair dye allergy with swollen eyes)
The skin prick test is a common method of identifying and testing if you are sensitive to the suspected allergens. A small needle is used to gently prick the skin through a drop of fluid containing a known allergen e.g. House dust mite. Multiple pricks may be necessary for multiple allergens. It is usually done on the forearm or on the back of young children.
The test is minimally painful and results are available 15 minutes later. The skin prick test is often done together with the IgE allergy blood test for a more accurate diagnosis.
Patch testing is a way of identifying and testing if a substance that comes into contact with your skin is causing inflammation of the skin (eczema). Common triggers include fragrances (for example, in soaps), nickel (in jewelry, belt buckles and coins) and chrome (in leathers and bricklayers’ cement).
The test involves the application of various test substances to the skin under adhesive tape for 48 to 72 hours. During the next visit, Dr Wong will examine the result and confirm which test substance you are allergic to.
Skin Prick Test
Skin Patch Test
The common food allergens include cow’s milk, egg, peanut, shellfish, wheat and bird nest. However, true food allergy is overestimated due to over-reporting and subjective bias by patients. A careful clinical assessment will help you to determine if your problem is truly related to food. Dr Wong may request patients to observe and record the symptoms associated with the suspected and implicated food. With the recorded observations, Dr Wong will be able to organize a more targeted food allergy test.
The main treatment of allergy is to avoid the allergens once they are identified. Dr Wong will also treat the skin rash with appropriate medications to control the reaction and symptoms. Commonly used medications include antihistamine, anti-inflammatory agents, and immunosuppressive medications when necessary.
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