One in three Britons claims to have an allergy

Childhood and adult allergies in Britain are rising dramatically every year. So just what’s making us itch and sneeze? We asked allergy expert DR ADRIAN MORRIS to keep a diary for a week. Here, in a revealing account, he sorts the genuine sufferers from the worried well.

MONDAY
Monday morning at my London clinic, and a flustered-looking woman in her 40s arrives complaining she is allergic to her new puppy.

Whenever she gets close to or even sees the dog, she says her chest tightens and she can’t breathe. She has no history of allergy and when I test her for dog allergy — with a blood test and a skin-prick test, where a small amount of each suspected allergen is placed on her skin and then punctured with a lancet — she is clear.

She does reveal she has a history of anxiety disorder, but when I suggest that the route of her symptoms could be psychological, she becomes angry and defensive and ends our session.

The following week, I receive a letter from her saying she went to an alternative practitioner subsequently, who told her she does have a dog allergy. She has got rid of the dog and feels much better. This is frustrating but not unusual: a number of patients I see have self-diagnosed an allergy mistakenly and then had it supposedly confirmed by an alternative practitioner.

Source - Daily Mail