Mussel Allergy IgE Blood Test
The Mussel Allergy IgE Blood Test measures the IgE antibody levels in the blood to help detect a food allergy to mussels.
What is the purpose of this test?
Order this Mussel Allergy IgE Blood Test to measure the IgE antibody levels in the blood to help detect a food allergy to mussels. Seafood allergies affect about 1-3% of Americans, with shellfish being one of the eight most prevalent food allergies. Shellfish are categorized into two groups: crustaceans and mollusks. Mussels are mollusks belonging to the Mytilidae family and are related to clams, oysters, and scallops. Therefore, most individuals allergic to one kind of shellfish may also be allergic to other types.
What causes an allergic reaction to mussels?
Once an individual with a mussel allergy ingests or comes in direct skin contact with mussels, it triggers an individual's immune system response. The immune system views certain substances as harmful and produces IgE antibodies to combat these invaders. Unfortunately, these antibodies cause the chemical histamine to be released, which will cause the symptoms associated with an allergic reaction.
What other food products should I avoid if I am allergic to mussels?
Individuals allergic to mussels should not only avoid the specific seafood that causes the reaction but also avoid seafood-based products, including:
- Imitation fish or shellfish
- Seafood stock (fish or shrimp)
- Fish oil, including some omega-3 supplements
- Seafood flavorings
- Caesar salad and dressings
- Salad dressing
- Certain meat dishes that contain seafood-based ingredients
- Surimi (minced fish paste)
- Worcestershire sauce and anything products that contain it, such as some barbeques sauces
Additionally, individuals may be allergic to mussels to the point that avoiding seafood markets, handling seafood, or being around cooking seafood is necessary.
When should I order a Mussel Allergy Blood Test?
Individuals may order this Mussel Allergy IgE Blood Test if they have experienced symptoms related to a seafood allergy. Allergy symptoms vary depending on the individual, ranging from mild to severe reactions. Most food-related symptoms occur within two hours of ingestion; however, they frequently begin within minutes. In addition, the response can be delayed by four to six hours or even longer in some rare cases.
An allergic reaction may affect the skin, intestinal lining, and air pathways. Individuals with mussel allergies may experience one or more of the following symptoms:
- Tingling sensation near or around the mouth
- Abdominal discomfort
- Nausea or vomiting
- Itching or hives
- Difficulty breathing, swallowing, or wheezing
A severe, possibly life-threatening allergic reaction known as anaphylaxis may occur in some cases. An anaphylactic response requires immediate medical attention. Signs or symptoms of anaphylaxis may include:
- Rapid or increased heart rate
- Swollen throat or lump making it difficult to breathe
- Low blood pressure
- Extreme dizziness or loss of consciousness
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