Allergic Asthma Testing and Management

Allergic asthma, or allergy-induced asthma, is a type of asthma that is triggered or made worse by allergies. Exposure to allergens (e.g., pollen, dander, mold, etc.) or irritants to which patients are sensitized may increase asthma symptoms and precipitate asthma exacerbations in patients who have asthma. Asthma and allergies often go hand in hand. In fact, up to 90 percent of children and 60 percent of adults with asthma suffer from allergies

With allergic asthma, medical history is often not enough to make an accurate allergy diagnosis. For example, a patient can present with a history indicative of house dust mite or cat allergy but actually not be sensitized. Identifying and reducing exposure to allergens to which patients are sensitized can reduce the risk of induced asthma exacerbations, particularly in the case of house dust mite sensitization.

It is also important to identify and treat other allergic conditions. For example, both allergic rhinitis and non-allergic rhinitis are risk factors for the development of asthma. More than 80 percent of people with asthma also suffer from rhinitis, suggesting the concept of “one airway, one disease.” The presence of allergic rhinitis commonly exacerbates asthma, increasing the risk of asthma attacks, emergency visits, and hospitalizations for asthma.

A blood test—together with an allergy-focused medical history—may help identify underlying allergen triggers.  A specific IgE test is a powerful allergy diagnostic tool that measures the concentration of specific IgE antibodies in the blood. It can test for hundreds of allergic triggers, such as pollen, mold, food, and animal dander.

To schedule a blood test with a Family Medicine doctor at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center, please call (718) 206-6942.

All content of this newsletter is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please consult a medical professional before adopting any of the suggestions on this page. You must never disregard professional medical advice or delay seeking medical treatment based upon any content of this newsletter. PROMPTLY CONSULT YOUR PHYSICIAN OR CALL 911 IF YOU BELIEVE YOU HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY.