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Allergy testing

(4 Posts)
Louise1970 Fri 22-Jul-05 23:27:49

I have crohns disease, and find it really hard to eat most foods. I have asked my conultant to do allergy testing, but they will not. They will not test my children until they are over 3. Does a blood allergy test show up sensitiviites towards foods, or just if you are allergic to them. I have many sensitivities but no realy allergies. Where can yo get it done? How much?

bobbybob Sat 23-Jul-05 04:58:21

A RAST blood test will check for allergies, and gives them a ranking between 0-5 (0 is not allergic and 5 is extremely allergic). I believe from another thread that GP can get them done by just sending them to the lab - but hopefully someone else will help you with that.

I'm in NZ and we pay for medical care and so I can just say "I would like Bob to be RAST tested for latex" and they do it. That's the thing though, you have to be testing for something specific, rather than a general test of lots of things.

There are also lots of things which don't give an accurate result - lots of fruit and veg falls into this category.

I can recommend Sue Dengates book "Fed up" for a really through exclusion diet and a list of "failsafe foods". You then introduce the food back in sets and then find out what you can and can't eat and why (may be sensitive to salicylates or amines or both). I know some people who have had amazing results.

Louise1970 Sat 23-Jul-05 14:01:16

Thanks bobbybob. Will have to visit the docs, i think

tatt Sun 24-Jul-05 06:38:51

The commonly used blood test only tests for IgE mediated allergy, not for what is commonly referred to as food intolerance but may be a different form of allergy. (I'm using allergy as an extreme response by the body to a substance that is normally harmless). I've found this web page very interesting in talking about tests and how other problems may occur.

http://www.allergy-clinic.co.uk/foodallergytesting.htm

Your gp can send a blood sample off to a laboratory for testing. We had a test for a single allergen (e.g. peanut), a wider screen (our lab offers a nut screen) and an overall IgE count to test if you are likely to be allergic but without identifying what you are allergic to. I don't know what else may be available or if all labs can do the same but I do know (from a parliamentary qustion) that some form of test for allergens is available across the country.

Our gp was totally unaware of what was available but fortunately he found out We found that it was very difficult to get the information unless you spoke to the allergy service themselves. It was also very difficult to find the allergy service to talk to them, even place like allergy uk and the anaphylaxis campaign (normally excellent) not giving good advice. If you can speak to a school nurse dealing with allergy they are trained by the allergy consultants and can at least tell you who offers a service.

For food intolerances its probably going to come down to an exclusion diet

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