Allergy is widespread and affects approximately a quarter of the population in the UK at some time in their lives.
The term allergy is used to describe a condition in which the immune system overreacts to a substance which is not normally harmful in itself. The result can range from a collection of inconvenient symptoms to a disease or even a life threatening reaction.
An allergic person’s immune system believes allergens to be damaging, so it produces a special type of antibody (IgE) to attack the invading material. This stimulates other invasion-fighting blood cells to release further chemicals which together cause the symptoms of an allergic reaction.
Allergic reactions are caused by substances in the environment known as allergens. This might be something someone has eaten, breathed in or come into skin contact with. Almost anything can be an allergen for someone.
Some of the more common food allergens are eggs, milk, gluten, shellfish and nuts.
Blood sample requiring a blood draw.
Eat a varied diet 2-3 weeks before collecting your sample to help to ensure the presence of antibodies to problematic foods. Antibodies to a particular food may be absent if the food was not consumed recently.
Do not eat foods that you have a known allergic reaction to.
The following medications may influence the antibody test results: Glucocorticoids (e.g., oral prednisone and/or steroid metered-dose inhaler), chemotherapy, other immunosuppressive agents (e.g., Humira, Rituxan), NSAIDS (e.g., Ibuprofen, Naproxen, Aspirin), anticonvulsants (e.g., Carbamaze.
Antibody testing may be inaccurate if you are a patient with liver disease, severe kidney disease, protein-losing enteropathy, HIV infection or other immuno-deficiency conditions. The test results will be inaccurately influenced if you have rheumatological pathologies associated with the production of heterophilic antibodies, for instance rheumatoid factor (RF).
Do not stop any medication without consulting your GP or therapist.
4 years and above.
This test requires a blood sample from a blood draw. You will need to arrange a blood draw via your GP or private phlebotomy service. The fee for any blood draw is not included with your test fee.
Samples must be received at the laboratory within 24 hours of the blood draw. Do not book a blood draw on a Friday-Sunday.
10-14 working days.
Your test results will be emailed to you.