According to new studies some people are wrongly staying away from penicillin because they think they are allergic to it. The studies were presented during the Asthma and Immunology Annual Scientific Meeting at the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology.
Many people think they are allergic to penicillin even without taking an allergy test to confirm so. In a couple of instances they are even given other antibiotics that are pricy and have potentially serious side effects.
According to the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology (ACAAI), individuals must consult an allergist and receive a penicillin allergy test to analyze her or his sensitivity to the medication. A research was made with 348 people who thought they were allergic to penicillin. However, after taking the allergy test, 94 percent of them got negative results for being allergic to penicillin.
The lead author of the study and ACAAI member and allergist Thanai Pongdee said that a very large number of people who believe they are allergic to penicillin are in fact not allergic. He said that even if they may have had a bad response to penicillin in the past, like swelling or hives, they did not show any evidence of an allergic response to penicillin at the current time. Knowing that, doctors prescribed different medicine before surgery.
Many people believe they are allergic because they had an allergic reaction to the medication when they were exposed to it at a young age. It is possible for people to out-grow their allergy.
38 other people who were also told to have penicillin allergy were subjects in another study. They were given allergy test to see if the cost of the alternate antibiotics could be lowered in their favor. All of them got a negative result to the allergy test and 29 of them even got altered medication from professionals.
James Sublett, allergist for the ACAAI and president-elect said:
“when you are told you have an allergy to something, it’s important to be seen and tested by an allergist, who has the specialized training needed for accurate diagnosis and treatment.”
He also added that the allergist will counsel an individual towards an appropriate solution if the person is truly allergic to a form of medication.