Description of the service

A prick test is a basic examination of immediate reactions such as suspected allergic rhinitis, shortness of breath or rash. It is used to examine sensitisation to pollen and animal dandruff. The test is commonly performed on the forearm. The test substances are dropped onto the skin in small droplets, and the skin surface is slightly punctured at each drop with a lancet needle. The result of the test is measured after 15 minutes. Reserve approximately 20–30 minutes to complete the test and measure the result.

A reaction at the skin puncture site does not always mean an allergy to the test substance, and a negative result does not completely rule out allergy. The test is therefore only one part of examining allergic diseases. The clinical interpretation of the result will be made by the doctor treating you. The test is not performed on children under 2 years of age at Fimlab’s service locations.

You should always book an appointment for a prick test.

Preparing for a skin prick test

  • Preparing for a skin prick test
    • Cortisone medicine injected into a joint does not affect the test result.
    • You can take your respiratory lung medicine normally.
    • Wash your forearms the night before testing but do not put lotion on them afterwards, as greasy skin will interfere with testing.
    • Sunbathing and phototherapy should be discontinued one week before the skin test.
    • The use of antihistamines and internal cortisone medicines reduces the ability of the skin to react. Their use should therefore be discontinued in good time before coming in for the tests. See details below.
    • Tests are usually not performed during pregnancy because pregnancy can distort the test results.
    • The skin test causes a slight pinching and itching sensation on the skin. However, the itching stops quickly, within approximately an hour of the test. After the skin test, small temporary bumps may appear at the puncture sites in the evening of the same day or over the next few days, but according to current understanding, the bumps are harmless.
    • If you have a rash on your arms, contact the doctor treating you. The test is intended to be performed on healthy skin.
  • Antihistamines

    Stop the following oral antihistamines 5 days before the test is performed:

    Aerinaze, Aerius, Alzyr, Atarax, Benadryl, Cetimax, Cetirizin (e.g. Cetirizin Bmm Pharma, Cetirizin-Ratiopharm, Cetirizin Sandoz), Cirrus, Clarityn, Codesan Comp, Dasselta, Desloratadin (e.g. Desloratadin Actavis, Desloratadin Teva), Duact, Gardex, Heinix, Histadin, Histec, Kestine, Kestine Lyo, Kestox, Levazyr, Levocetirizin (e.g. Levocetirizin Ratiopharm, Levocetirizin Stada), Loratadin (e.g. Loratadin Actavis, Loratadin Hexal), Nefoxef, Nocedan, Revitelle, Rinomar, Telfast, Tuulixy, Xyrte, Zyrc.

    Stop the following nasal sprays and eye drops containing antihistamines 5 days before the test is performed:

    Dymista, Emadine, Lastin, Livostin, Opatanol, Zaditen.

  • Cough medicines and antidepressants

    Cough medicines and antidepressants may interfere with the test result. It is recommended to stop these medications temporarily 5 days before the test date, but only if there is no problem with stopping the medication. If you are unsure about the effects of a break in your medication, please contact the doctor who prescribed the treatment.

  • Cortisone and eczema creams

    Do not apply cortisone or eczema creams named Protopic and Elidel to the elbow fold within 7 days prior to testing.

  • Cortisone medication

    If you are taking cortisone tablets (e.g. Hydrocortisone, Medrol, Prednisolone, Prednison) at a dose higher than 20 mg per day, please contact the doctor treating you, as higher doses may affect the test result.


  • Who will interpret my results?

    Please note that the doctor treating you is always responsible for interpreting the results.  Consult your doctor if you have any questions regarding the test results.