What Is Skin Allergy Testing? Skin testing is the oldest and most reliable form of allergy testing. This form of testing has been performed for 100 years and continues to be the testing of choice for the diagnosis of allergic disease.
Testing begins with a prick, puncture or scratch method, which involves the placing a drop of the allergen in question on the skin and abrading the skin with a needle. This testing is not painful,and generally there is no bleeding involved since the needle only scratches the surface of the skin.
After the skin is scratched, the tests takes about 15 minutes to develop. There may be many skin tests performed, depending on the person’s age, symptoms and other factors. A positive skin test appears as a raised, red itchy bump, similar to a mosquito bite. The test is compared to the positive and negative controls, which are 2 other skin tests placed along with the allergens to be tested.