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reader1 05-09-2004 01:56 PM

Re: blood or skin allergy testing??
Here's the way my allergist (who conducted both types of tests on me) explained it to me: the skin testing will show exactly what I'm allergic to. The blood tests will show severity by telling you how high your IgE level is. IgE is a major factor in the allergic response mechanism. When you're exposed to an allergen, the free-floating IgE will bind to the mast cells and start an allergic reaction. My IgE score last time was nearly 800. Normal is anything under 100. The skin tests showed I was allergic to 55 different things.

The IgE thing is why everyone is so excited about Xolair, the new anti-IgE medication. Xolair binds to the IgE so that the IgE can't/won't bind to the mast cell upon the introduction of the allergen. I've been on allergy shots and tons of meds forever and I've still been miserable most of my life. I started Xolair in October and it is making a big difference for me.

GettingWellAgain 05-16-2004 06:24 PM

Re: blood or skin allergy testing??
That's really interesting. I'm going to an allergy clinic in the beginning of June after waiting MONTHS (I currently have no health insurance). I also have had shots before and tried tons of different medications and Xolair sounds awesome. Is it in pill form?

lacy33 05-18-2004 09:59 AM

Re: blood or skin allergy testing??
I took a blood and skin test. The blood test was given to me by an ENT. It came out that I wasn't allergic to anything accept maybe ragweed. They also told me that I did not need to get off any allergy meds I was taking for this blood test- which doesn't make sense to me.

About 7 months later, when my headaches, sinus pressure still wasn't better, I got a skin test. I had reactions to everything they put on my arm within 5 minutes. In my experience, I do no think the blood test was very accurate.

Dear Maggie 05-18-2004 10:30 AM

you may have a point
Or it could be that you gained some more chemical exposure of some kind, as eventually it causes you to have sensitivity to all kinds of chemicalsl

Have you ever had a 'retic ratio'?
Something to consider if you have other odd symptoms such as the CFS or 'gulf war syndrome' symptoms

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