Most GP services are unable to refer all their patients for allergy testing due to the limited NHS allocated allowance. Whether you are an adult wanting to know about your allergy or you have a child whom you think is suffering from allergy, our clinic is able to provide allergy screening services and advice led by nurse allergy specialist who have years of experience in this field. Our test and reagents are similar to the test conducted and solutions used by leading allergy consultants in the UK hospitals and other private allergy clinic. The only difference is you do not have to pay an expensive consultation fee to have your history taken, be in the long queue of waiting list and do not necessarily need a referral to have the allergy test done. We can also provide a letter and inform your GP with the result of your test and consultation should this be needed or if opted, referrals can be done to a private allergy consultant for a formal diagnosis and further treatment such as immunotherapy. Alternatively, if you need a private prescription and medicine delivered to you, we have access to mobile doctor consultation via DocNoc who can provide you this including further advice. Please note that we cannot dictate your local GP to refer you to the allergy consultant, provide you a prescription via NHS following your test as it is your GP’s decision and call if further management is needed.
Our test are clinical rather than the rampant low cost alternative, analytical and based on probability testing which are not recommended by UK NICE (The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) guideline. Allergy test can be carried out using skin prick test method, prick to prick testing (prick from specific fresh, cooked food or allergen itself) or blood test which will be advised by the nurse allergy specialist following consultation.
Don’t suffer in silence and wait for an anaphylaxis (severe allergic reaction) to cause a life-threatening situation. Improve your quality of life by knowing the potential source of allergy, without worries that you or a child might have contact with allergen that can make you feel unwell.
Do I have an allergy?
If you suffer with potentially allergy-related symptoms such as sneezing, itching, intermittent rashes, persistent cough, congested nose or has strong family history of asthma, hay fever or eczema, then you probably have an allergy and may benefit with our allergy test.
What type of allergy test do I need?
When you book an appointment with our clinic, our allergy specialist will do a consultation where your history will be taken and discussed. Following consultation, you will be advised if the test will be clinically beneficial or if you need other specific test which our clinic is unable to provide at the time of appointment. However, most allergy testing is done through the following which our clinic is able to provide:
Skin prick testing (SPT): Drops of allergen or pre-prepared mixture of allergen will be applied onto the skin and then prick the skin to allow the allergen penetrate into the upper layers of the skin. The result can be interpreted after 10-15 minutes and the specialist will inform you if you have a positive response based on the diameter of the wheals. Majority of the test is preferably done through SPT although this could be combined with a blood test for accurate findings leading to right diagnosis.
Blood test: The amount of allergen-specific antibody (Ig E) which is strongly linked to the body’s allergy response is detected and measured through a blood collected from a vein and sent to the laboratory for analysis. This can be opted for people who has severe eczema or unable to stop taking their anti-histamine. A profile test (e.g finfish, shellfish, cereals, nuts and seeds, UK, Mediterranean and Middle East profile, children’s panel, inhalants, insects) or blood test for individual allergen can be performed. Results may take a couple of days and depending on the result, another consultation via phone or in the clinic may be advised.
ImmunoCap Specific IgE blood test: This is an expensive test but the most comprehensive method of screening to detect specific antibodies (Ig E) to more than 100 allergen components from more than 50 preselected allergen sources through a single test.
Prick to Prick test: The method is similar to skin prick test, however, a specific fresh allergen or cooked food will be used to test the reactions to certain allergen. This can be opted if specific prepared allergy reagents are unavailable and other allergy testing results are negative despite a clear history of reaction to allergen.
Does the test hurt?
A skin prick test or prick to prick test does not usually cause pain for majority of the individuals, however, allergy screening through a blood test involves a needle inserted through a vein in the arm where some people may find slightly uncomfortable. The method of blood test is similar to other type of blood test which you may have had before but not for the purpose of allergy testing.
Is the test safe?
Our specialist are experienced and follow the health and safety guideline in withdrawing blood or doing the skin prick test. The test are very safe and there are no significant side effects although in blood tests, some people who have very sensitive skin may have a small bruise following withdrawal of small amount of blood. Redness and slight itching on the skin following the skin prick test may be observed but this usually goes away in a couple of hours. An anti-histamine cream can be applied on the skin inflammation if needed for comfort.
What preparation do I need before the test?
You have to avoid antihistamines for 48 hours before your appointment in the clinic although this is not advised if you have severe rashes or swellings. If it is not possible to stop taking your antihistamine before you attend the clinic, a blood test may be advised by the specialist following your consultation as skin prick testing result can be altered by antihistamine. Please advise the clinic if you are unable to stop taking your antihistamine or you may call if you have any concerns regarding this.
Certain medications and supplements may alter allergy testing results. Therefore if it is safe for you to do so, beginning 7 to 10 days before allergy testing:
- Avoid all antihistamines
- Avoid over-the-counter allergy and sinus remedies (Many of these preparations contain antihistamines)
- Avoid herbal remedies
- Avoid applying topical steroids to your forearms and your upper arms
Who does the allergy testing?
Our allergy testing is done by competent, well- experienced nurse allergy specialists who have several years of experience in the allergy field, who also works in allergy department of NHS hospital and routinely does the test in the hospital. The test carried out are similar to the test done by allergy consultants in both NHS hospital and private clinics. Our allergy nurse specialist are fully qualified to the allergy screening test and trained to deal with anaphylactic reaction.
How can the allergy test help me? Can I have diagnosis after my test?
The aim of our clinic is to promote preventative service and be a reasonable choice as a first step of finding out about your allergy. It may involve tedious several tests, further consultations with different specialist doctors and management before a formal diagnosis can be given when in some cases, all you want to know is if you or your child have an allergy with certain allergen and how severe could it be. There are only 30 full time allergy doctor specialist in the UK considering the population in the UK with allergy (1 doctor per 700,000 population, 1 in 3 Britons have allergy), hence, not everyone can be catered in NHS apart from the cost demand. Overseas, the test may be even more expensive and not carried out at a UK standard. Our private clinic offers allergy testing to provide accessibility at a reasonable cost. We are unable to give you a formal diagnosis following consultation and your test in the clinic, however, we are able to liaise and make referrals to your GP or private allergy consultant, if opted, should this be needed. Often, clients who come to our clinic do the test for awareness of the causative allergen to have a control with what they eat or in contact with which leads to less worry and improving their quality of life.
Our allergy nurse specialist are well-experienced who can interpret the results and provide you the necessary advice for allergy management. We even provide anaphylactic (severe allergic reaction) management and can give you a trainer pen and adrenaline auto-injector leaflet during the consultation should this be needed. Hospital admissions for anaphylaxis have risen by 500% since 1990. For people who suffers from allergy, anaphylactic reaction can be life threatening or cause a significant disability.
What allergens can I be tested for?
Our clinic offers a wide range of allergens that you can be tested for. You may have an idea of what you are allergic to but a consultation where history is taken is still needed so the specialist can advise the appropriate test needed or if the test will either be clinically beneficial for you or not. We would not conduct any test for the purpose of business and we would always get your consent, giving you informed decision of the test to be done.
Please click the link to see available allergen in the clinic.LIST OF AVAILABLE ALLERGENS
Why is the allergy test in the clinic more expensive that the self-testing kits I see online?
Our test are clinical rather than the rampant low cost alternative, analytical and based on probability testing which are not recommended by UK NICE (The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) guideline. Our test and reagents are similar to the test conducted and solutions used by leading allergy consultants in the UK hospitals and other private allergy clinic.
Please click Allergy test prices to check available test and price.Allergy Test Prices