Information on Allergy Test For Alcohol

Submitted by Medical Health Test Team on October 16, 2012

An allergy is the abnormal reaction of the immune system when the body comes into contact with a substance that triggers the abnormal immune system reaction. This substance is known as an allergen. Without the interference of the immune system, the allergen is unlikely to affect the body in any way and is considered to be harmless. However, because of the extreme reaction of the immune system, the allergen causes an allergic reaction. This reaction could either be something mild that is virtually unnoticeable or could be so severe that it is considered to be a medical emergency. Allergic reactions are typically present in the form of skin rashes and inflammations. Allergic reactions could occur in the mouth and throat, resulting in inflammation there. Finally, allergic reactions can occur in the digestive system which could result in indigestion, abdominal pain and diarrhea.

Alcohol allergies are extremely rare. Also, studies have shown that it is not necessarily the alcohol that is causing the reaction, but one of the other components of the drink being consumed. Wine, for example, has alcohol and many other ingredients such as sulfites. It is actually this component that causes the allergy to alcohol.

An allergy test for alcohol has to be conducted based on the judgment of the person affected by the allergy. When the consumption of the drink is immediately associated with digestive distress, pain in the stomach and abdomen, vomiting and nausea, it can be assumed that the person is allergic to alcohol.  This reaction should happen with the first drink itself and not after a few drinks. These symptoms are also common in a person who has consumed too much alcohol but that situation is quite different from an alcohol allergy. The allergy is the immediate reaction of the immune system to the presence of some component in the drink that is considered to be harmful. Skin symptoms may also present with an alcohol allergy. These include redness and the development of rashes. Alcohol allergies are also known to produce asthmatic reactions in some people. When the consumption of alcohol results in breathing difficulty without any other obvious cause, it could be assumed that the person is alcohol intolerant.

A laboratory test for alcohol allergies is usually conducted using the chemicals that are present in the alcohol being consumed to understand which component is triggering the reaction. However, if any of the above symptoms occur, it is advisable to avoid alcohol regardless of whether the allergy test for alcohol is positive or negative.

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