Overview of an Insect Venom Skin Test
The results of your allergy test will be completed before you leave the office. Once you know what allergies you have, then you can properly avoid them. In some cases, it is hard to avoid the allergen, in cases such as pollen. If the allergen is unavoidable then your allergist will recommend a medication or treatment plan. Once you have your symptoms under control, you will notice that your quality of life is higher.
Methods of an Insect Venom Skin Test
During an insect venom skin test, the nurse will begin by cleaning the test area. Then the venom will be placed on the skin and the skin will be pricked. The reaction may take up to 30 minutes, so you will have to wait in the office to ensure no serious reaction occurs. If this test comes back inconclusive, then your allergist may do another test where the venom is injected directly under the skin. In extreme cases, the allergist may recommend a blood test instead.
Risks of an Insect Venom Skin Test
There are rarely risks involved with allergy testing. If you know your allergy is severe, alert your allergist before the testing begins. In some cases, the allergist will administer a blood test instead of the skin test. In most skin tests, there is a chance that the injection spot may turn red and become raised. This happens when an allergy is present.
Preparing for an Insect Venom Skin Test
Before the test, ask your physician when you should stop taking your medications, when applicable. Some medications will interfere with the accuracy of the results. You should also be sure to let your allergist know about past experiences with the allergen. The allergist should know about any severe reactions that you have had in the past.
What to Expect during an Insect Venom Skin Test
The allergist will clean the skin and place marks where the allergens will be placed. Once the allergens are placed on the spots, then the skin will be pricked. You will be in the office for about a half-hour after the test to wait on a reaction.
Results of an Insect Venom Skin Test
If you had a reaction to the test, then you are allergic to the insect sting. Since you can not necessarily avoid an insect sting, you can take precautionary measures. You may want to avoid places that have bees, wasps, hornets, etc. Your allergist may also recommend certain medications, such as carrying an epinephrine pen, or even going through immunotherapy.