Food challenge test

  • A food challenge is the best and definitive way to know if a person has a food allergy. The test consists in giving small but increasing amounts of a suspected allergen (approximately every 20 minutes). If the patient presents with a reaction, the challenge is stopped and the patient is considered allergic to that food and they need to strictly avoid it. When no reaction occurs to any of the doses of food, the patient will receive a full serving of the food. If they can tolerate a normal portion size for their age then the patient is considered to tolerate the food and is encouraged to continue eating it at home.
  • This test is always performed in a hospital and the person is monitored carefully for signs and symptoms of allergy. After finishing the challenge, the patient needs to stay for a period of observation after the final dose to ensure there is no delayed reaction.
  • If the patient is taking any of the medications, please see the section on allergy medications
  • Please bring lunch for you and your child. He/she may be permitted to eat lunch/snacks approximately one hour after the last dose of food is given.