At Aspire Allergy & Sinus, we can test and treat common food allergies in children as young as 4 months. We offer food allergy testing at all of our clinics.
Options for food allergy testing include:
- Skin testing
- Blood testing
- Oral Food Challenge
Once testing is performed, we can help you determine the best course of treatment through Oral Immunotherapy (OIT), and discuss your options.
Food allergy symptoms can range from minor to life-threatening.
- Mouth itching
- Swelling of the lips or mouth or other parts of the body
- Immediate nausea, vomiting and/or delayed diarrhea
- Asthma symptoms (wheezing, shortness of breath)
Nearly 90% of food allergies are caused by one of the 8 following food allergies:
- Tree Nuts (Almonds, Cashews, Hazelnut, etc)
Skin tests involve lightly pricking the skin with a tiny drop of the liquid food allergen. This is not painful. Some patients even think it tickles!
After about 20 minutes, we’re able to see the results by measuring the reaction on the skin. This can range from just a bit of redness to a raised “mosquito bite” looking bump. A raised bump generally indicates an allergic reaction and that treatment may be necessary.
Food allergy blood testing detects and measures the amount of allergen-specific antibodies in your blood. Test results are usually available in 1-2 weeks. An outside lab tests the blood sample and sends the results to our specialists at Aspire Allergy & Sinus.
An oral food challenge may be recommended if results from a skin or blood test are uncertain. During this process, you’ll eat or drink small portions of a food in increasing amounts over a period of time to see if an allergic reaction occurs. This is always done under a doctor’s supervision.
While skin and blood testing are both ways to test for food allergies, oral food challenges are known as the “gold standard” for diagnosing food allergies.
What to Expect During the Oral Food Challenge:
All food challenges are done at Aspire Allergy & Sinus clinics and are conducted by a board-certified physician who has been trained to manage oral food challenges and extensive food allergy therapy.
Emergency medications (including epinephrine, antihistamine and other emergency medications) will all be on hand and ready to be used, if needed.
At the start of the challenge you’ll be given a very small, measured amount of the allergen and observed closely. If no symptoms develop after 20 minutes, then another, slightly larger amount of the food will be given. This process will be repeated over the course of about three to four hours. The goal is to work up to a full serving size of the food you’re allergic to.