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Doctors Must Not Overly Rely on Skin Tests to Diagnose Allergies

by Kathy Jones on December 27, 2011 at 9:46 PM
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 Doctors Must Not Overly Rely on Skin Tests to Diagnose Allergies

A group of American researchers have said that doctors should not rely only on skin or blood tests to check for allergies and warned that there was a serious danger of over diagnosing such allergies.

According to the report published in the journal Pediatrics, the researchers said that the tests could be positive for allergies for a large section of people even though they do not display any form of clinical symptoms. The study was conducted by Dr Robert Wood of the Johns Hopkins Children's Center and Dr Scott Sicherer of Mt Sinai.

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The researchers point out to data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey conducted in 2005-06 which shows that more than eight percent of the participants tested positive for peanut allergy though just one percent of them displayed clinical symptoms of being allergic.

Stating that allergy tests should be used as just one of the tools in reaching a diagnosis, Dr Wood said, "Allergy tests can help a clinician in making a diagnosis but tests by themselves are not diagnostic magic bullets or foolproof predictors of clinical disease."



Source: Medindia
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