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Testing for Allergic Diseases

IgE antibodies appear in human serum and plasma as a result of sensitization to a specific allergen. While clinical presentation and patient history may offer numerous possible causes of symptoms, diagnostic testing can narrow those possibilities and improve confidence in a diagnosis.1,2 enabling you to provide treatment tailored to your patient’s individual needs.
 

Diagnostic testing for allergic sensitization provides various benefits, including:

  • The ability to rule out allergy
    Negative or normal test results may enable you to rule out IgE-mediated allergy altogether as a cause of a patient’s symptoms, better enabling you to steer their treatment path, medication, and management in the correct direction.1-3
  • Ensure the appropriate medication
    An accurate diagnosis of allergic sensitizations may help you optimize medication regimen and ensure appropriate treatment.
  • Follow allergic diseases over time
    Appropriate testing as a follow-up strategy can be a valuable tool to track disease development or regression, and patient management may be adjusted accordingly to achieve the best possible outcomes.

THE ROLE OF TESTING IN DIAGNOSIS OF ALLERGIC DISEASES

If the patient history suggests an IgE-mediated allergy, specific IgE blood testing can be used to confirm a suspicion of allergy and to determine the offending allergens, or to rule out allergy all together in symptomatic patients.

Benefits of quantitative blood tests in the diagnosis of allergic diseases

Measurement of circulating IgE antibodies provides an objective assessment of sensitization to an allergen. In general, low IgE antibody levels indicate a low probability of clinical disease, whereas high antibody levels to an allergen show good correlation with clinical disease.4

A standard blood test is convenient—and can test your patients from among over 550 whole allergens and mixes, such as weeds, trees, grasses, pollen, food, and animal dander. Tests are simple to perform, and can be done irrespective of age, skin condition, antihistamine use, or pregnancy.5-7

IgE graph


 

References
  1.  Duran-Tauleria E, Vignati G, Guedan MJ, et al. The utility of specific immunoglobulin E measurements in primary care. Allergy. 2004;59 (Suppl 78):35-41.
  2. Niggemann B, Nilsson M, Friedrichs F. Paediatric allergy diagnosis in primary care is improved by invitro allergen specific IgE testing. Pediatr Allergy Immunol. 2008;19:325-331.
  3. Kwong KYC, et al. The Benefits of Specific Immunoglobulin E Testing in the Primary Care Setting. Am J Manag Care. 2011;17(suppl 17):S447-S459.
  4. Yunginger JW, et al. Quantitative IgE antibody assays in allergic diseases. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2000;105(6pt1):1077-1084.  
  5. Siles RI, Hsieh FH. Allergy blood testing: A practical guide for clinicians. Cleve Clin J Med. 2011;78(9):585-592.    
  6. Bonnelykke K, et al. Sensitization does not develop in utero. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2008;121(3):646-651.  
  7. Bacharier LB, et al. Diagnosis and treatment of asthma in childhood: a PRACTALL consensus report. Allergy. 2008;63(1):5-34.