A “patch” test is one of the most commonly used testing methods by an Allergist in Columbus MS. The duration varies, but the laying of these patches takes between twenty and thirty minutes. Depending on the substance, they are worn for two to four days.
The upper part of the back is the area most used by doctors because it offers a large space to perform adequate testing. Self-adhesive “pads” containing numerous allergens are applied to the skin. They cannot get wet (which means the patient cannot take a bath or shower or go swimming) nor can they be removed, even momentarily, before they are “read” by the Allergist in Columbus MS.
If there is an allergic reaction, the patient may experience redness, localized swelling, and some tingling. Residual pigmentation may persist for a few weeks after the doctor removes the patch, and some itching may occur for a few days afterd the patch is removed. Severe skin manifestations can be observed, but they are rare.
Special attention is paid to those patients who have highly active eczema.
Doctors ask each patient what medicines they are taking because the use of certain drugs can give false negative results (antihistamines, cortisone by mouth or by injection, immunosuppressive therapy, etc.) or false positive (cough syrup containing codeine, and so on) and when cortisone based-creams are applied on the arms or back. Patients receiving beta-blockers should discontinue treatment twenty-four hours before the test because they may interfere with the management of a possible secondary reaction. For the patch test, the use of cortisone cream should be discontinued at least a month before testing.
From the banalest to the harshest, side effects are very rare. A doctor is always present during the tests to ensure the patient’s safety. An intervention may consist of intravenous infusion, steroids (intravenous), an antihistamine (intramuscularly or orally), a bronchodilator (aerosol) or adrenaline (intramuscularly).
The patient will be kept under surveillance until their condition is normalized. For immediate allergic reactions related to respiratory allergens, venoms, certain drugs and sometimes certain foods, it is possible to carry out a blood test. However, this approach is less sensitive, takes longer, does not allow the doctor to evaluate all allergens, or to identify delayed allergic mechanisms.
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