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Microsoft word - foodchallengepatientinfo080613.docx
Food or Drug Challenge Patient Information What is a food/drug challenge?
Your doctor has suggested that you or your child have a food/drug challenge as part of your evaluation at Allergy/Immunology Associates, Inc. This is based on you or your child’s history and allergy test results. A food/drug challenge is done to help identify an allergy to a specific food/drug and the amount of that food/drug it may take to cause a reaction.
How do you get ready for the test?
Please follow these directions when getting ready for this test:
Bring in the specific food/drug for the food challenge.
Please bring the food/drug the
day of the test. If your child is having a food challenge, you should bring a favorite food
in which to place the food to be challenged if you think he/she may refuse the food being
challenged. Use the table below to determine how to prepare the food for the food
Cooked without spices except 4 ounces, cut into small pieces for salt, if desired
wheat, etc). Ensure the food product contains nothing but the grain you are being challenged to.
Antihistamines will affect the results of these tests and need to be stopped 3 days
before the testing is done.
If you have any concerns about stopping antihistamines check
with your/your child's doctor before you stop the medicine. We may not be able to
perform the test if this medicine is not stopped. The names of some common anti-
histamines are listed in the table below.
The medications listed in the table below should be stopped the evening before your test because they act like antihistamines:
Sometimes antidepressants and medications used for psychiatric disorders can also act as
Let your doctor know if you are on any antidepressants before your food
Continue to take all your other medicine as you usually do.
What is done during the test?
During a food/drug challenge, you/your child will start by eating a small amount of the suspected food/drug. You/your child will receive increasing amounts of the food/drug usually every 15 to 30 minutes until a normal meal-sized portion (or full dose of the drug) is eaten or the challenge is stopped because of symptoms or a reaction. You will be monitored during the challenge by the medical staff. Your doctor will be available to provide evaluation or treatment in case of any symptoms. The challenge may be an open, hidden or a double blind placebo controlled challenge. During an open challenge you/your child will know the food/drug being challenged. During a hidden challenge the food/drug may be hidden in a food you/your child likes. This is helpful for a child who may not want to eat the food/drug being challenged. For example, if egg is the food being challenged, it may be hidden in chocolate pudding. During a double blind placebo controlled challenge the food/drug being challenged is hidden from the person being challenged and the health care provider giving the food/drug. The health care provider preparing the challenge is aware of the food/drug being challenged. This may be done to prevent the possibility of symptoms caused by thinking about eating a particular food/drug.
Once the challenge is done your doctor will discuss the results with you and make recommendations.
How long will the test take?
A challenge will usually take 4 hours but may take longer.
If a child is having the challenge a
parent or legal guardian will need to be present for the duration of the challenge. Be sure to
bring snacks, meals, other essentials (such as diapers or other medicines you may need to take
during the day such as insulin), and things to pass the time (such as books or toys). You will not
be allowed to leave the office until the challenge is complete.
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