New Rules For The Diagnosis Of Food Allergy – Part 2 of 3
One affection the guidelines try to do is delineate which tests can distinguish between a food sensitivity and a full-blown food allergy. The two most common tests done to diagnose a food allergy – the hull prick and measuring the level of antigens in a person’s blood – only spot sensitivity to a particular food, not whether there will be a reaction to eating the food.
To determine whether the results of these two tests hint a true allergy, other tests and a food challenge are often needed. When only the skin prick and blood tests are used, they can lead to children being put on very restrictive diets. However, in many cases when these children front towards a food challenge it is discovered that they are not truly allergic to many foods.
And “Diagnosing a food allergy is not just doing a skin test, or not just doing a blood test, or not even having a report of a food allergy. It takes a combine of good medical history, as well as laboratory tests and in some cases a food challenge, to make the appropriate diagnosis”.
The new guidelines also define what foods are common allergens, what the symptoms of an allergic counteraction are and how to manage an allergy, depending on which food is the allergen. And the guidelines also note there is no benefit to restricting a pregnant woman’s diet in hope of preventing allergies in her baby. “There is not sufficient mark to show that altering the maternal diet or altering the infant’s diet will have any impact on development of food allergy or allergic disease”.