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Rivista di Medicina Interna
Indexed/Abstracted in: BIOSIS Previews, Current Contents/Clinical Medicine, EMBASE, PubMed/MEDLINE, Science Citation Index Expanded (SciSearch), Scopus
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Panminerva Medica 1999 June;41(2):115-7
Measurement of specific IgEs in the diagnosis of drug allergy
From the Second Chair of Internal Medicine Allergology Out-Patient’s Clinic Department of Internal Medicine, Turin University, Turin, Italy
Background. The anamnesis and, in certain cases, skin tests are indispensable methods for the correct diagnosis of allergy to drugs. However, in some cases, these two techniques alone, prove insufficient in achieving reliable predictive elements for drug allergies. Besides, the use of skin testing is often discouraged, due to the potential risks involved.
Methods. In this study, the diagnostic efficiency of the measurement of specific IgE for a selected group of 13 drugs was evaluated. The test was carried out on 96 patients showing clinical signs directly attributable to the administration of one particular drug (in 38 of the 96 cases) or more drugs (58/96 cases). The symptoms appeared after a week or more from the beginning of the drug treatment; this time interval is compatible with the development of an immune response.
Results. The drugs most frequently causing adverse reactions were salicylic acid, noramidopyrin, propiphenazone, other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), trimetoprim, antibiotics. RAST was applied to 13 drugs and was positive for at least one of the drugs tested in 31/96 patients.
Conclusions. The results of the study confirm the validity of the RAST technique as a useful element in improving and making the overall diagnosis of allergies to drugs more reliable.