Patients Who Claim Penicillin Allergy Often Aren't Allergic

November 9, 2017

A large majority of patients at an allergy clinic who said they were allergic to penicillin had negative responses to the agent in skin testing, researchers reported here. Of the 66 patients who underwent a penicillin skin test, 58 (88%) tested negative. While 10% of the U.S. population reports being allergic to penicillin, 90% are not allergic, and less than 0.1% of the 25 million patients who are allergic to penicillin undergo penicillin skin testing annually. You may want to consider getting tested if you think you are allergic to penicillin, as 80-90% are not actually allergic which results in the use of more expensive antibiotics.


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