Roughly 90% of all food allergies boil down to 8 culprits – cow’s milk, eggs, fish, peanuts, shellfish, soy, tree nuts, and wheat. If you believe you have a food allergy but have not been tested yet, it’s important to do so. We do not recommend testing yourself for food allergies at home due to safety reasons. Discover three different ways Dr. Brauer can safely test for food allergies and what treatments are available:
At your skin-prick test appointment, Dr. Brauer will combine a small amount of the suspected allergen with a liquid. She will prick your skin (normally on your arm or back) with a tiny probe and place the liquid on top of the area. This allows the liquid to enter your skin. If you are allergic to the suspected culprit, a bump or rash may occur at the placement site. A skin-prick test is a straightforward way of determining if you have food allergies.
While a blood test is not as conclusive as a skin-prick test, it can still produce information so Dr. Brauer can make an educated decision concerning your food allergies. If you opt for a blood test, a small amount of blood will be taken and Dr. Brauer will see how much immunoglobulin E antibodies related to the suspected food allergy are present.
Oral Food Challenge
If the previous tests are inconclusive, an oral food challenge can be completed. During this appointment, the patient will eat a small amount of the suspected food. Because an allergic reaction can take place minutes or hours after the food is consumed, the patient will wait/be under supervision for a few hours after consuming the particle. An oral food challenge is the most accurate way to diagnose food allergies.
Treatment Options for Food Allergies
Thankfully, a positive food allergy diagnosis does NOT mean you have to live with it for the rest of your life! Dr. Brauer can discuss treatment options with you that will re-train your immune system to accept, instead of attack, the food particle.
“As a parent myself, I understand the value of knowing your child is safe. I am very involved in counseling, community education forums, and local support groups to help our patients live safe and full lives despite their food allergy restrictions.” – Dr. Brauer