Skin Patch Allergy Testing 

Here you will find websites that explain and desribe all about patch testing for allergies, what it involves, what is tested and how the results are interpreted. 

I had patch testing done for my unexplained skin condition. It does not hurt but is a little inconvenient and the reactions I found to be a bit itchy. However it was certainly worth it to find out why my skin was reacting so badly.

Skin Patch Allergy Testing Procedure

The procedure i went through was to go to the clinic on a Monday morning to have the patches with known allergens onto my back.

It felt like a series of very large sticking plasters. After that I was not permitted to get the area wet or damp so I can only have very shallow baths and not very warm either so as to avoid steam getting the patches damp. 

Due to all the markings the nurses make it is wise to wear a t shirt or shirt you don't care about as the marks may stain clothing. I wore a couple of old t shirts day and night. It is actually easier to wear clothing that unbuttons down the front as less hassle to get on and off. 

On the Wednesday I went back to have the patches removed and a first reading taken. Still had to keep area  dry. 

On Friday I had to go back again for a final reading and to see the Dr for a final diagnosis. For me there were three very good reactions which clearly stated what I was allergic to. I was then given sheets with an explanation of the allergens and all I had to avoid- which in my case is a lot!!  

 A Few Helpful Tips

Wear clothing that is easy for you to remove and put back on. The patches go across your back and the markers can stain so wear something that you don't care about too much.

Wear something in bed at night as well to protect the patches from coming off. 

If you get a reaction it may well itch or feel sore. Do not stratch it. I was advised not to take antihistamines but to contact them if the itching got unbearable. It was very itchy for me but I did not need to ask for any medication as it is only a very small area of irritation. 

The video below explains skin patch allergy testing.

 It also shows a demonstration of an actual skin patch allergy test.  Of course do discuss with your healthcare professional exactly how your skin patch testing will occur as it may vary from place to place and between countries.