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Alpha Galactose (Gal) Allergy IgE Blood Test Panel

The alpha galactose (alpha-gal) allergy blood panel measures the amount of allergen-specific IgE antibodies in the blood in order to detect an allergy to alpha-gal.

Sample Report

Test Code: 91380

CPT Code: 86003 (X3), 86008

Also Known As:


Preparation: No special preparation required.

Test Results: 3-5 days. May take longer based on weather, holiday or lab delays.


The alpha galactose (gal) allergy IgE blood test panel includes:

  • Alpha-gal IgE allergy
  • Beef IgE Allergy
  • Pork IgE Allergy
  • Lamb IgE Allergy

Alpha-gal is a carbohydrate particle present in most red meat, which includes beef, lamb, and pork. As opposed to other allergies to food, alpha-gal reactions can appear 3 to 6 hours after ingestion. The response can be delayed due to carbohydrates taking a more extended period to be absorbed into the body, unlike proteins.

Most commonly, an alpha-gal allergy is developed as an adult.  It has been shown that a bite from a lone star tick can cause this allergy.  The tick has alpha-gal in their saliva, so a response is triggered by the immune system when bitten.  The body views certain substances as toxic and produces IgE antibodies to these contaminants. These antibodies created to protect against the tick bite will remain in the individual's system, thus, causing the symptoms of an allergic reaction when consuming meat.

Some individuals have severe reactions that can result in being unable to breathe. Allergic reactions vary in severity on a case by case basis.  The most common symptoms include:

  • nausea
  • headache
  • runny nose or congestion
  • sneezing hives
  • diarrhea
  • anaphylaxis
  • asthma


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