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Food Allergy

A food allergy occurs when the body treats a particular food protein as foreign to the body and responds with release of chemicals called histamines, causing food allergy symptoms. Food allergies can cause an overreaction by your immune system reaction that occurs soon after eating even a tiny amount of a certain food. Symptoms of food allergies can range from itching, swelling, and rashes to severe allergic reactions that include dizziness, trouble swallowing or breathing, abdominal cramps, vomiting and loss of consciousness.

The most common food allergies can occur from ingestion of the following foods:  

  • Peanuts

  • Shellfish

  • Milk

  • Soy

  • Fish

  • Eggs

  • Wheat



Food Allergy Testing

At Allergy, Asthma & Sinus Center, there are a variety of ways that we can diagnose your food allergies in Sterling, Leesburg, or Purcellville. Allergy skin testing (also known as prick or scratch testing) can determine your reaction to a particular food. During a skin prick test, a small amount of the suspected food is placed on your skin. We will then prick your skin with a small plastic device to allow a minuscule amount of the substance to penetrate your skin. If you suffer from any allergies to the substance being tested, you will develop a welt on the offending area within minutes.

We may ask you to prepare a diet diary, which will record all of the food you eat during a specific period of time. We may also prescribe an elimination diet, which will clear your body of foods that may be causing you food allergies. In this way, we partner with you to find the cause of your food allergies in Sterling, Leesburg, or Purcellville. 

Food Allergy Treatment

Once you figure out what food you are allergic to, you can avoid that food in your diet. However, you inadvertently may come in contact with a food ingredient that causes your food allergy. Food allergy treatment with antihistamines may help reduce itching or hives that you may develop as a result of your exposure to the offending food. If you experience a severe allergic reaction, you may need an emergency injection of epinephrine. People with allergies may need to carry an epinephrine auto injector, or EpiPen. At Allergy, Asthma & Sinus Center, we can provide you with food allergy treatment in Sterling, Leesburg, or Purcellville.

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