The child’s immune system is completely weak when it is born. The baby receives all the useful substances with mother's milk. The same applies to the antibodies that help the crumbs cope with all sorts of infections and colds. The only thing that a product filled with useful flora cannot handle is an allergy.
What is an allergy?
The definition of allergy involves various reactions of the immune system in the form of skin rashes, edema of the mucous membrane, itching, difficulty breathing, rhinitis and anaphylactic shock.
It must be said that more than 50% of the world's population suffer from various types of allergic reactions. This can be either a banal food intolerance, or a reaction acquired over time to plant pollen, any detergent, or animal dander.
When a foreign body enters the body, the entire immune system is activated to fight the “trespasser”. Ready-made antibodies try to block the allergen, covering it with a membrane. Thus, antibodies appear in the body IgE, IgG4. In the interaction of allergens and these antibodies, histamine and other mediators are released, contributing to the appearance of an immediate allergic reaction. In total there are four types of antibodies, respectively, capable of causing four types of allergies.
The list of allergens is quite wide, and each has its own causative agent of adverse reactions. It can be:
- citrus fruits (oranges, lemons, tangerines);
- dust mites;
- pet hair;
- egg yolk or white;
- flower and plant pollen;
- potato starch;
- red pigment in fruits and vegetables (lycopene and anthocyanin).
Some also have an intolerance to animal proteins - cottage cheese, meat, milk.
In addition, the appearance of allergies is associated not only with the consumption of products, but also with environmental factors: air pollution, water, increased radioactive background, etc.
It is proved that allergy is inherited. Thus, the rash and desquamation occurring on the infant’s body is associated with the production of IgE antibodies, which give an immediate response to the antigen in the body. This reaction is called "atopy" and is hereditary, but now it can manifest itself at different ages.
What could be allergies?
In order to determine the list of allergens that threaten the health of a child or an adult, doctors offer to test for allergies. In this way, all antigens that can cause undesirable reactions can be eliminated within a week.
The modern method of skin allergies allows you to do no more than fifteen tests in one session. To carry out this study, small scratches are made on the forearm of the patient with a sterile scarifier, to which an allergen powder is applied. Already in the first 15 minutes, the reaction of the organism will show whether one of the reagents is an antigen for the person being tested.
Redness, hyperemia, itching - these are the results that the doctor is waiting for. But the disadvantage of such testing is the possible falsehood of positive results. In addition, scarification skin tests can cause a deterioration in the patient's condition. These tests should not be performed on children under three years of age, in the presence of fever and other infections.
Another method of researching allergens helps to check what may be allergic, by taking blood from a vein. This analysis gives a detailed picture of the presence of antibodies in the body and their reaction to one or another antigen.
The uniqueness of the method lies in the fact that the resulting biomaterial is laid out into fractions, and then applied on a special paper plate with ready-made antigens. After a while, if they react, then blackouts appear on the panel in places with the desired antigen.
This method gives 99% accurate results and is the most accurate to date.
What is the pediatric allergen panel?
Blood tests are also required for testing with the pediatric allergen panel. At the moment, this analysis is the most affordable and safe. It can be carried out even for children from 6 months.
The analysis is done within a week. For emergency cases, a quick decoding of the results is provided in just two days. Screening is carried out only in a specialized laboratory by qualified specialists.
Pediatric panel of allergens makes it possible to determine the antigens of more than twelve types of the most common allergies.
How to prepare for the delivery of analysis
To perform the analysis, it is necessary in the morning on an empty stomach to donate blood. If the patient is taking any drugs, it is worth visiting a specialist and asking them to cancel one week before the prescribed blood draw.
Adults who are going to take the test should give up bad habits (smoking, drinking alcohol) three days before testing. Children who receive a routine vaccine can donate blood only three months after vaccination.
Before the procedure, the attending physician should conduct an oral survey or questioning the patient, his close relatives and the people with whom he lives. Thus, the primary selection, and the doctor may cross out some allergens that are not found in the daily life of the patient.
A plus of the mentioned poll are accurate information about hereditary diseases, drugs taken by relatives ever, bad habits and dietary norms.
How to understand the results
Pediatric allergen panel is filled with those substances that can cause a reaction in a patient. What exactly it will be, the doctor finds out during the survey.
The obtained indicators are divided from the lowest to the critical:
- 0.36-0.8 - low;
- 0.8-3.6 - medium;
- 3.6-17.6 - moderately high;
- 17.6-51 - high;
- 51-100 - very high;
- more than 100 - critical.
It is worth remembering that the faster the correct diagnosis is made, the sooner the doctors will be able to prescribe adequate therapy. The accuracy of the results depends entirely on the patient. After all, if he will follow the recommendations of a specialist, the final result will not be long in coming.
First of all, the pediatrician will prescribe a diet that excludes all products that react more than 0.9% of the interaction with the antigen. If there are severe skin rashes and itching, the pediatrician may prescribe antihistamine tablets (or syrup if the child is less than 2 years old) and ointments that will reduce itching and redness.
It is worth remembering that it is not always the cause of the rash or itching that is caused by allergies. Improper diet, dry bread, a lot of fat and fried can lead to a malfunction of the gastrointestinal tract and liver.
If the pediatric panel of allergens did not produce results, it is worth contacting a gastroenterologist and undergo a full examination. Banal dysbiosis can also give unpleasant consequences in the form of rash, itching, peeling.