Author：Xiao-Dan Jiang Ph.D. Guang-Yu Li M.D. Zhen Dong M.D. and Dong-Dong Zhu Ph.D.
Background: Skin-prick testing (SPT) is the most common screening method for allergy evaluation. The detection of serum-specific immunoglobulin E (sIgE) is also commonly used. The sensitivity and specificity of these testing methods may vary due to type of causative allergen and type of allergic manifestation. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the correlation between two methods of measuring sIgE (AllergyScreen [Mediwiss Analytic GmbH, Moers, Germany] and ImmunoCAP [Pharmacia, Uppsala, Sweden]) and SPT for the diagnosis of allergic rhinitis (AR).
Methods: All 216 patients who were referred to the allergist for suspected AR from June to October 2009 had SPT and the two serological tests. One hundred fifty-eight patients had a positive clinical history and a related positive SPT. The SPT was used as reference standard, and we selected three allergens (Dermatophagoides pteronyssinus, mugwort, and ragweed), which were common in fall in northeast China, to analyze the correlation of the two serum tests and SPT.
Results: Compared with the SPT, the diagnostic indexes (accuracy, sensitivity and specificity) of the AllergyScreen system and the ImmunoCAP system were 0.819 versus 0.810, 0.780 versus 0.872, and 0.862 versus 0.741, respectively. The accuracy was similar between the two systems (p > 0.05). The ImmunoCAP system method had a higher sensitivity (p < 0.01). The AllergyScreen system had a higher specificity (p < 0.01).
Conclusion: These data support that the AllergyScreen system and ImmunoCAP system can identify potentially significant allergens in the diagnosis of AR in patients from northeastern China.
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