Esophageal allergy testing via prick test
An esophageal prick test similar to the skin testing commonly used by Allergists, appears promising in a new article. The process, in which allergens are injected directly into the esophageal mucosa, appears to identify individuals with esophageal sensitization, researchers report in the January issue of Gastroenterology.
The tests provide a meaningful alternative in the evaluation of eosinophilic esophagitis. Skin tests and measurement of serum levels of immunoglobulin do not always identify foods that trigger this reaction, possibly because the eosinophilic inflammation is restricted to the esophagus. Also, symptoms do not always correlate with disease activity. Finally, there is significant overlap between the symptoms and the histologic reaction to acid exposure in the esophagus. This is why traditionally elimination diets and periodic endoscopy have been necessary to gauge success.