How are skin and blood tests for allergies different?

Paul M. Ehrlich, MD
Allergy & Immunology
Science shows us that skin tests and blood tests for allergies don't really measure the same things. The antibodies that register in a blood test have a half-life of two days. They come and go without putting your immune system on a state of red alert. The ones that react in the skin have a half-life of six to eight weeks, which means that your body is ready to strike for a protracted period.
Asthma Allergies Children: A Parent's Guide

More About this Book

Asthma Allergies Children: A Parent's Guide

Asthma and allergies are at epidemic proportions. It doesn't have to be that way. Two experienced pediatric allergists tell everything a conscientious parent needs to know about these conditions,...

Continue Learning about Allergies Diagnosis

What kind of doctor should I see if I think I have an allergy?
Tracy KonoskeTracy Konoske
I'd like to expand on what Jim White replied...It's important to determine if you have what is calle...
More Answers
What is patch testing for contact allergic reactions?
Dr. Michael Roizen, MDDr. Michael Roizen, MD
If you already know what is causing your rash, say a new soap or the ring you bought on the street t...
More Answers
How do I know if my allergy symptoms are from allergies?
Sky Ridge Medical CenterSky Ridge Medical Center
The three main causes of allergy symptoms are allergic rhinitis, irritant rhinitis or a combination ...
More Answers
When are lab tests needed for diagnosing allergies?
It's important to pinpoint exactly what's sparking your allergy symptoms in the first place. Even if...
More Answers

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.