What is patch testing?
Patch testing is a specialized skin test dermatologists use to help identify causes of contact dermatitis.
What does patch testing consist of?
Patch testing consists of pieces of tape, which hold small metallic disks containing a number of known possible irritants. These test strips are placed on the back and the patient will go ho home.
In several days the patient returns to the dermatologist and the skin is examined to see if any of the test substances have caused a reaction in the skin.
Are there any risks associated with patch testing?
Some risks are involved and you may actually have some itching and irritation from the testing itself. Topical creams and antihistamines can help with these and your dermatologist will go over all of these with you prior to beginning the patch testing process.
Can any doctor do patch testing?
No. Only dermatologists or allergists with special training can do patch testing.