Skin prick tests

skin prickA small droplet of allergen extract (protein) is placed onto the skin (usually the forearm or shin of child), and a tiny “prick” is made through the skin using a small needle (lancet) through the drop.

If the test is positive, a wheal or swelling will appear at the site of the prick. The wheal is then measured after 15 to 20 minutes.

At North Shore Paediatric Allergy Centre, we use a needleless system where the allergen droplet and prick is administered simultaneously. This technique is quicker and results in less discomfort compared with the traditional method.

As allergies are complex and vary from child to child, we do not perform standard “panels” of allergy tests.

Instead, a thorough history and examination is obtained before individualized skin prick testing to specific allergens (where necessary) is performed on each child.

Your doctor will then explain to you the test result and the implications of this test result. Each patient receives a printed report of the allergy test to keep as a personal record.