Penicillin Testing

Research proves that allergies to penicillin and related antibiotics are frequently reported in people who, after allergy testing, can safely take those medications after all. Penicillin is effective and inexpensive, so penicillin allergy testing is critical to ensure that patients have the best infection treatment options available to them.

Diagnosis & Treatment Options

Penicillin allergy testing may include skin prick testing, intradermal skin testing, and an oral challenge. Your Greater Austin Allergy physician will determine a testing plan based on your unique medical and symptom history. With the skin prick test, a drop of penicillin extract is applied using a plastic applicator to prick/scratch the skin’s surface. If an itchy, red, raised bump results, the patient generally receives a penicillin allergy diagnosis. If results are inconclusive or negative, an intradermal test uses a small needle to inject penicillin just under the skin. The injection site is inspected for the same red bump as in skin testing. If positive, a penicillin allergy is diagnosed. Your physician may recommend one more test to ensure the most accurate results.

In an oral challenge, the patient receives increasing doses of penicillin by mouth at prescribed intervals while under medical supervision. If no reaction occurs to any of these tests, you will be considered free of penicillin allergy and able to take the medication as prescribed.

Most patients who come in for penicillin allergy testing leave Greater Austin Allergy with the knowledge that they can safely take penicillin in the future. If you suspect a penicillin allergy, come in for testing to find out whether you have an allergy or are among the majority who can benefit from this tried-and-true antibiotic.